Background: Systemic mastocytosis (SM) patients are at a high risk for anaphylaxis, with Hymenoptera as the main culprit. A screening instrument to identify which patients are sensitized to Hymenoptera before they experience anaphylaxis would therefore be of great value. The basophil activation test (BAT) is proposed as a possible tool for diagnosing Hymenoptera venom-related allergy (HVA), especially in patients in whom conventional allergy tests yield contradictory results. Methods: We included outpatients with SM, according to WHO criteria, from September 2011 to January 2012. Next, to obtain various clinical data including intradermal test results, specific immunoglobulin E (sIgE) measurements and BAT were performed. Results: We included 29 patients, 9 of whom had a history of HVA and 4 of whom had experienced anaphylaxis due to other triggers. Sixteen patients had no history of anaphylaxis. sIgE was detected in 6 patients with HVA and in 2 patients with anaphylaxis due to other triggers. The BAT was positive in only 1 patient, in whom the skin test and sIgE were also positive. Compared to patients with skin lesions, those without skin lesions had significantly more anaphylaxis and sIgE to Hymenoptera. During a 3-year follow-up, no one experienced new anaphylactic episodes. Conclusion: The BAT is not a reliable tool for randomly screening SM patients for HVA.

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International Archives of Allergy and Immunology
Department of Immunology

Rietveld, M. J. A., Schreurs, M., Gerth van Wijk, R., van Daele, P., & Hermans, M. A. W. (2016). The Basophil Activation Test Is Not a Useful Screening Tool for Hymenoptera Venom-Related Anaphylaxis in Patients with Systemic Mastocytosis. International Archives of Allergy and Immunology, 169(2), 125–129. doi:10.1159/000444996