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Medical History for Allergic Rhinitis

Topic Overview

Your doctor can often diagnose allergic rhinitis by asking you questions about your symptoms and past medical problems. Following are some questions he or she may ask:

  • What are your allergy symptoms like? What is your main symptom? How much does it bother you? Is there anything that makes it worse?
  • How old were you when you first had these symptoms?
  • How often do you have allergy symptoms, and how long do your symptoms last?
  • Do you have trouble sleeping or have you missed school or work because of your allergy symptoms?
  • What time of year and what time of day do you have allergy symptoms?
  • Does anyone else in your family have allergy problems, including allergic asthma?
  • Do you have other medical conditions that are related to allergies, such as asthma, eczema, or rhinitis?
  • Did you have allergies as a child?
  • What medicines, including over-the-counter medicines and dietary supplements, are you taking now? Do these medicines help your allergy symptoms?
  • Have you ever had surgery on your nose, throat, or ears?

Your doctor may also ask questions to help learn what might trigger your allergy.

  • Where are your allergy symptoms worse? At home? At work? At school?
  • Does your home ever feel damp or wet? What is the usual temperature in your home?
  • Do you ever use air conditioners or humidifiers?
  • Do you have carpeting in your bedroom?
  • Do you have any indoor pets, such as a cat or a dog?
  • Do you spend most of your time indoors or outdoors?
  • Do you work with chemicals or other irritating substances?
  • Do you or anyone in your household smoke?
  • Do you have a fireplace or wood-burning stove?

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Rohit K Katial, MD - Allergy and Immunology
Last Revised June 17, 2013

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

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