Tags: Health Topics | allergen immunotherapy

Allergen Immunotherapy and Conditions It Treats

By    |   Friday, 24 Jun 2016 06:38 PM

Allergies that trigger persistent symptoms may require allergen immunotherapy. The treatment uses allergy shots administered over a certain time period to help decrease sensitivity to allergens and provide relief.

A doctor specializing in immunology or allergies may recommend allergen immunotherapy if medications haven’t produced the desired results or if a patient wants to avoid long-term use of medications, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.

The doctor might also consider the severity of a patient’s symptoms and the allergy season when setting up a schedule for allergy shots. The patient needs to understand that injections must be timely in order to treat allergic symptoms properly.

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Treatment includes increasing amounts of allergens used in the shots to help build up immunity to allergies. This may last for several months. A maintenance period follows and may last for three to five years.

Side effects are uncommon, but serious reactions need immediate medical treatment. Patients are usually advised to stay in the doctor’s office for 30 minutes after allergen immunotherapy is administered. Anaphylactic reactions, if they occur, can develop within 30 minutes of the shots. Symptoms include wheezing, tightness in the chest, and swelling in the throat.

Allergy shots are often effective for seasonal allergies, including asthma or hay fever, the Mayo Clinic explains.

Allergic symptoms may occur from exposure to grasses, weeds, or other substances outside.

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Indoor allergens are also relieved through allergy shots for people allergic to such substances as dander from pets, mold, or dust mites.

Some people are allergic to bee or wasp stings and other insect bites, and are treated with allergen immunotherapy.

Allergy shots don’t treat food allergies or chronic hives.

Allergy shots are used for eye allergies and allergies to certain drugs, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians.

Doctors might not recommend allergen immunotherapy for severe asthma and heart disease or for people taking beta blockers for heart problems.

Children under age 5 and pregnant women aren’t usually given allergy shots.

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A doctor specializing in immunology or allergies may recommend allergen immunotherapy if medications haven’t produced the desired results or if a patient wants to avoid long-term use of medications.
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2016-38-24
Friday, 24 Jun 2016 06:38 PM
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