Boots and IgG food intolerance testing

Boots UK do not offer IgG food intolerance testing – which is, as is summarised here, regarded by the immunological, dietetic and wider scientific community as useless – but Boots Ireland do.

Strange then, that Boots WebMD, on their How to Try an Elimination Diet page, say this:

I queried Boots regarding this contradictory discrepancy. Boots replied:

The WebMD site has information specific to the UK which means that some of the information may not be relevant or apply due to different systems in place for anywhere outside the UK. As there isn’t a nationalised health service in ROI, all tests such as this would need to be undertaken privately, we therefore made this service available as it wouldn’t be available through their GP practice.

I replied:

It’s not available through UK GP practice either, and also has to be purchased privately in the UK. But the point is Boots are warning against a test on the WebMD site and yet also selling it.

Boots replied:

While I do understand your concerns I must reiterate that WebMD is information provided for UK information purposes only. Healthcare systems here in the UK and in Ireland can differ largely, and as such the services we offer are not always applicable in both places. The service we offer in the Republic of Ireland is present as there is a need for it from our customers, and as part of this service patients are also referred to a GP or dietician.

I fail to see how a test which Boots believe to be “unreliable” for the UK market can be ‘needed’ in the Irish market.

I’d very much like to hear the views of some Irish RDs who have had patients referred to them on the basis of an IgG test, given that the Irish Nutrition and Dietitian Institute‘s position on the matter appears to be unequivocal, supporting that of the Irish Food Allergy Network and the Irish Association of Allergy and Immunology. To wit:

There is neither a rational scientific basis nor proven role for …  isolated IgG testing … for diagnosing or managing food allergy or intolerance.

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