Utilising a Skin Prick Test for the determination of the presence of allergic rhinitis in divers

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Abstract

Allergic rhinitis occurs in various regions of the world and affects from 10 to 40% of the population. The skin prick test is the “gold standard” for the detection of type I allergic diseases according to the Gella and Coombs classification, which is mediated by IgE. For our experiment, skin prick tests were performed on 60 divers aged between 30 and 40 years of age. The following tests for airborne allergens were used: tests for pollen from trees, grasses, cereals, weeds, proteins from house dust mites, animal hair and epidermis, and moulds. On the basis of an interview and a positive skin prick test allergic rhinitis was diagnosed in 17 divers.

Conclusions:

  1. Allergic rhinitis can cause health problems in divers and be the cause of diving accidents.

  2. The application of the skin prick test during the health qualification in the Military Maritime Health Commission, would allow the exclusion of diver candidates suffering from allergies.

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