Known Information

  • Penicillin skin testing is a novel way to reduce use of broad spectrum antibiotics and can have a significant and immediate impact on antibiotic usage.3
  • The National Quality Partners’ Antibiotic Stewardship Action Team recommends penicillin allergy skin testing as a component of a comprehensive antibiotic stewardship program.5
  • A number of medical centers have used penicillin skin testing (many using only penicilloylpolylysine and penicillin G as skin test reagents) in patients with a history of penicillin allergy to reduce the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and improve use of antibiotic selections.1
  • PST frequently allowed for less expensive agents that would have been avoided due to a reported allergy.6

Penicillin allergy testing as soon as possible after admission is important to derive the maximum benefit of knowing whether a person is truly allergic to penicillin-class antibiotics.4

Patients claiming a penicillin allergy (compared to control subjects) had1:


Higher Incidence of C. difficile


Higher Incidence of MRSA


Higher Incidence of VRE Infections

Contact ALK at or
1-800-325-7354 to learn how ALK can
help you impact antibiotic treatment
through penicillin allergy testing.

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  • 1. Joint Task Force on Practice Parameters representing the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology; American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology; Joint Council of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Drug allergy: an updated practice parameter. Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2010 Oct;105(4):259-273.
  • 2. Blumenthal, Kimberly. Fortune Favors the Bold: Give a Beta-Lactam! Clinical infectious Diseases Advance Access. 2016 July.
  • 3. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Get smart for healthcare website. [Cited 2016 Apr].
  • 4. Macy, Eric. Healthcare Use and Serious Infection Prevalence Associated with Penicillin "Allergy" in Hospitalized Patients: A Cohort Study. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. 2013.
  • 5. NQF Playbook & AAAAI Position Statement: Penicillin Allergy. 2016.
  • 6. Rimawi. The impact of penicillin skin testing on clinical practice and antimicrobial stewardship. 2013.