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FAQs

Will Allergy Testing be Performed on My Initial Visit?

What Type of Testing is Available for Environmental Allergies?

What Type of Testing is Available for Food Allergies?

What is Skin Testing?

What is Patch Testing?

What is Spirometry?

What Types of Insurance Do We Accept?

Do I Need a Referral?

What Happens if I am Late for My Appointment?

What Happens if I Miss My Appointment?

Whom do I contact regarding questions about billing?

 

 

  1. Will Allergy Testing be Performed on My Initial Visit?

On your initial visit, the doctor will decide if allergy testing is appropriate for you based on your individual history. In order for allergy testing to be accurate, antihistamines need to be stopped for at least 72 hrs prior to the visit. Only stop your antihistamines if you are able to tolerate not taking them. If your symptoms are too severe while off them, please restart your medications. If you are unsure whether you should stop your medication, please call our office and ask our staff. A list of common antihistamines can be found under our new patient tab.

  1. What Type of Testing is Available for Environmental Allergies?

There are 2 types of testing available for environmental allergies: skin testing and blood testing. Skin testing is more accurate so this is the test method of choice when possible. The doctor can discuss this further with you at your visit based on your individual history.

  1. What Type of Testing is Available for Food Allergies?

There are 2 types of testing available for food allergies: skin testing and blood testing. Skin testing is more accurate for most foods. However, there are a few foods for which blood testing is also very accurate. The doctor can discuss this further with you at your visit based on your individual history.

  1. What is Skin Testing?

Allergy skin testing is performed to evaluate for environmental and food allergies. The initial test that is usually performed is skin prick testing. This is a relatively painless procedure in which the skin is pricked with mixtures containing different common allergens. For environmental allergens, we focus on triggers in the Northern Virginia and greater Washington DC area. We base food allergy testing on each individual's history. After the tests are placed, the patient will wait for 15 minutes and then the test results will be read.

For environmental allergies, if the patient tests negative on skin prick testing, the doctor will decide based on the history if a second level of testing would be helpful. This is called intradermal testing and involves placing a larger amount of allergens under the skin with small needles. This will always be discussed with the patient and family before being performed. Intradermal testing is not done for food allergies because of the higher risk of reactions.

  1. What is Patch Testing?

Patch testing is performed when there is a concern of contact allergies causing a skin rash. Our test includes a standard panel of 29 common contact allergens. In addition we can also test for specific products used by a patient that are not included on the standard test. In order for the patch testing to be accurate, the patient must be off all steroid products for at least 2 weeks prior to the test.

This test takes 1 week to complete. On Monday, the tests are placed on the upper back. On Wednesday, the test patches are removed. On Thursday, the patient comes to the office for the initial patch test reading. On the following Monday, the patient comes to the office for a final test reading and review of the results with the physician. The test area must remain dry for the first 48 hours until the patches are removed.

  1. What is Spirometry?

Spirometry is a basic breathing test we perform in our office on patients to evaluate for asthma. It is a quick, simple method to give the doctor an objective method to help evaluate your breathing symptoms. Young children are usually not able to accurately perform this test.

  1. What Types of Insurance Do We Accept?

We accept most major insurances. However, to confirm coverage, you should contact your insurance carrier. We submit charges to the insurance companies as a courtesy to our patients but patients are ultimately responsible for all charges that incur, including those that are denied by their insurance carrier.

  1. Do I Need a Referral?

Please contact your insurance carrier if a referral from your primary care is required for any office visits, including allergy injections and tests. It is the responsibility of the patient to provide us with all necessary referrals. The patient will be held responsible for all charges denied by the insurance because of a missing referral. If you do not have a referral on the day of your visit and still wish to receive any medical services, you will be asked to pay in full for any medical services.

It is also the patient's responsibility to know when their referral expires in order to prevent denials of any future office visits and shot appointments. Patients are also responsible for denial of any subsequent revisits that are not supported by valid referrals.

  1. What Happens if I am Late for My Appointment?

A 15 minute grace period is allowed for clinic visits and a 10 minute grace period for allergy injections. However, beyond this time, we reserve the right to reschedule late appointments to be fair to other patients.

  1. What Happens if I Miss My Appointment?

We will not charge you for the first missed appointment, however, subsequent missed clinic visits to the doctor will incur a $35.00 charge and allergy injection appointments a $10.00 charge. In order to avoid any charges, all cancellations and changes must be made at least 24 business hours prior to the scheduled appointment.

  1. Whom do I contact regarding questions about billing?

For all billing inquiries, please call either Melanie Staiman at (703) 737-6027, e-mail Loudoun Medical Group, or call our office at (703) 443-6717. You will receive a return phone call within 1–2 business days. Please put a phone number where you can be reached at anytime.