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A patient's allergy to penicillin may soon be determined by a simple skin test, according to researchers at the International Congress of Dermatology. Two viewpoints were presented on a skin test substance known as penicilloyl-polylysine, which creates a reaction in some individuals with immediate-type allergies to penicillin without sensitizing normal individuals.
Dr. W. G. Simpson of Washington, D.C., a U.S. Public Health Service epidemiologist, said that test results with the reagent are significant enough "to warrant optimism on the eventual usefulness of this test in determining penicillin sensitivity."
However, Simpson said, "a more comprehensive evaluation" is necessary before it is used generally by physicians.
Another report in the form of a scientific exhibit, was more enthusiastic.
Dr. A. L. de Weck and Dr. H. Kuske, from the Department of Dermatology, University of Bern, Switzerland, reported on experiences with penicilloyl-polylysine, administered as an injection or as a scratch test on 2,000
Skin Test Developed to Test Allergy to Penicillin. JAMA. 1962;182(1):A37–A38. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050400117049
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