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Alternaria Tenuis

Phadia’s M6 test is used to detect blood levels of the IgE (antibodies) responsible for allergic reactions (rhinitis, conjunctivitis, asthma) to mould. The IgE detected in the test are specific to Alternaria tenuis (also called Alternaria alternata), the species most frequently found in our environment (air, dust, surface of building materials, etc.) and in some workplaces (bakeries, paper mills, etc.). This mould is also the cause of dark stains on tree foliage. The interpretation chart accompanying the result expresses the probability of an allergic reaction to Alternaria tenuis, but not necessarily the severity of the reaction. Case history (symptoms, relation to the season and type of dwelling, etc.) and clinical examination by the physician are essential for a reliable interpretation of the results.

An anti-Alternaria tenuis IgE result of less than 0.35 kilounits per litre (< 0.35 kU/L) indicates that the most common moulds are probably not responsible for the symptoms reported by the person, but it DOES NOT COMPLETELY RULE OUT THIS POSSIBILITY. All negative and positive results must be interpreted in light of the case history.

Term of the Week

Hot zone

A hot zone is a section of a facility (sometimes an entire facility or even a city district) where there is a high risk of contamination by patients with an infectious disease. All individuals entering a hot zone must respect appropriate protective measures. By analogy, “cold zone” and “warm zone” are used to refer to areas where there is no infected individual or only individuals suspected of having an infection.