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Penicillin allergy rashes in children misdiagnosed

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Skin rashes in children though to be caused by an allergic reaction to penicillin may instead have been caused by a virus, according to scientists.

A study of 88 children who were being treated with beta-lactams and had developed delayed onset urticarial or maculopapular rashes found that around two-thirds were infected with some type of virus.

Two months after presenting at the emergency ward, further tests found that less than 7% of these children were allergic to penicillin.

As a result of their research, the Swiss scientists concluded that oral challenge tests are the best method of diagnosing penicillin allergies in children.

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