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ACAAI > Patients & Public > Resources > Ask the Allergist

Ask the Allergist

Ask ACAAI Allergist experts your questions on asthma and allergy!

Submitted questions are reviewed by the editorial staff and those that are relevant to the general allergic population will be published online. We are unable to provide specific medical advice intended for an individual patient. The information presented here is not to be considered specific medical advice and it is supplied for information only. Always discuss your medical problems with your allergist and make decisions on your health after personal consultation. Find an allergist

Allergic to Milk?

Q. Recently I discovered I might have a food allergy to milk. After drinking milk, I have some irritation and a few spots of hives. A friend of mine suggested that I try Lactaid milk, soy milk or even organic milk. Was he correct? What are my options? Should I avoid food products that have milk ingredients listed? Your help would be appreciated.

A. We are sorry to hear you are having difficulty with cow’s milk. Certainly, symptoms of hives after drinking milk might indicate a milk allergy. Before you restrict your diet excessively it would be a good idea to see a board-certified allergist to determine the cause of your symptoms, since hives are not always caused by a food allergy. The allergist will take a detailed history then do food allergy skin testing and possibly allergy blood testing to milk to determine if you have a milk allergy. The allergist might even suggest a "milk challenge" (have you drink milk) in an office or hospital setting to best determine the nature of your milk reaction.
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