Contact Allergy Testing Clinic

The Rutgers Health Contact Allergy Testing Clinic helps identify the cause of skin rashes.

A common cause of skin rashes is allergy to materials in the home and workplace. This condition is "contact dermatitis," and the rash may burn or itch. The allergens or products, ingredients, chemicals, or materials that people may be allergic to include:

  • Cleansers
  • Dyes
  • Flavorings
  • Fragrances
  • Metals
  • Preservatives
  • Topical antibiotics
  • Topical creams and ointments 

To identify the cause of the rash, our specialists can run contact allergy testing (patch testing). Unlike the more common "prick testing" and radioallergosorbent (RAST) tests, patch testing uses no needles and does not require blood tests. The test involves taping allergens to your back. These "patches" remain on for two days before removal. We then read the patches, return them to your back, and then read them again after two more days. If we find the cause of the rash, removal of a responsible allergen from a person’s environment can occur. If cause of the rash is not due to an identified allergen, patients will know their discomfort is not the result of most common allergens.

Physicians in our clinic are on the faculty of Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, a part of Rutgers University, one of the top research institutions in America. Our doctors are active in clinical research and in teaching about all aspects of dermatology. Each brings life-changing knowledge from the classroom to the exam room.

If you or a loved one has concerns about skin, hair, and nails, the Rutgers Health Contact Allergy Testing Clinic can help determine many sources of discomfort.