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August 13, 1973

Medical News

JAMA. 1973;225(7):679-690. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220340003002

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Thermography finds use in bringing allergic skin reactions to light  One of the newest and least appreciated uses of thermography is in the field of clinical allergy. Recently, having already made a report in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (November 1972), allergist Raymond G. Slavin, MD, of St. Louis told members of the American Thermographic Society about his work and showed some impressive thermo-photographs.Application of thermography to allergy is "obvious," said Dr. Slavin, because of the basic mechanism of allergy. That is, when an allergen such as grass pollen or ragweed comes in contact with its appropriate reaginic antibody (known to be an IgE immunoglobulin), an immune complex is formed. Since reaginic antibody is fixed to tissue mast cells and basophils, the formation of the immune complex alters the cell membrane of these cells, causing them to release chemical mediators such as histamine. Histamine affects the