FAQs Allergy Treatment Program - MD Family Clinic

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FAQ – IMMUNOTHERAPY

Allergy Treatment Program

 

 

How does allergen immunotherapy work?

Immunotherapy is customized to treat your specific allergies. Immunotherapy trains your immune system by injecting a small amount of what you are allergic to. This gradual exposure will produce antibodies that will build a natural resistance or immunity.

 

Does it hurt?

The injection is superficial as it only deposits a very small quantity of the allergen(s) under your skin, it may cause no more than a slight discomfort.

 

What allergies does immunotherapy treat?

Allergies caused by inhalation of pollen, dust, dander, tree, grass and many others.

 

How do I know what am I allergic to?

Your healthcare provider will use an allergy test to determine what you are allergic to. Your treatment will be designed specifically for you based on the results.

 

At what age can immunotherapy be administered?

Immunotherapy can be given to children 5 years old and up and adults as well.

 

Is it safe for kids?

Yes, in fact, immunotherapy has been proven specifically effective in children because it prevents the development of new allergies and other further complications.

 

What are the risks and/or side effects?

Immunotherapy is very safe. The most frequent reaction is a local irritation in the injection site. When this happens, in most cases it does not require specific treatment and improves as immunotherapy is continued.  The risk of a serious allergic reaction is rare, they normally occur within 30 minutes, for this reason you will be asked to remain in the clinic for 30 minutes after the injection for observation.

 

How often do I need to receive immunotherapy?

The injections start with a very low dose of the allergen for safety and it is gradually increased as you build up tolerance against it. At the beginning, during the build-up phase, you must receive the treatment two times per week, then it will gradually become less frequent, once per week, afterwards two times per month and finally, after certain dose is reached, it is given only once per month.

 

How long does it take to notice improvement?

It varies from person to person; some patients can notice improvement as soon as a couple weeks after starting the treatment and in other cases it can take up to 6 to 12 months.

 

How long do I have to receive the treatment?

The duration may vary. To receive maximum benefit, the standard is 3 to 5 years, however, the results are gradual, so you will start noticing improvement in the first couple of weeks/months.

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