Immunotherapy: Allergy Shots
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The desired objective is to overcome the disease: the shots are addressed to the origin of the problem. The rest of medicines used in allergy (antihistamines, steroids, etc) are good choices but they only target the symptoms, not the ultimate origin.
Allergy diseases that can be treated with immunotherapy include allergic rhinitis (hay fever), allergic asthma and hymenoptera (bees and wasps) allergy. Food allergy immunotherapy is currently under investigation
[quote align=”center” color=”blue”]Allergy shots are the only treatment directed straight to the origin of allergy
Current international guides recommend as a good start five-years-old and older patients. There is no a top age where to get the treatment.
How do they work?
Increasing doses are adminstered with the allergen responsible of the allergy, with the aim of getting tolerance to it.
The final target is to lower or even disappear the symptoms when the patient is exposed to these allergens.
How long takes the treatment
It is a progressive medium-term treatment to get maximum efficacy. It is not advised to quit in advance. It may take three to five years, with two clear phases:
- Starting stage: low doses are gradually increasing till maintenance dose is reached. The idea is to tolerate the doses.
- Maintenance: the dose is repeated on a monthly basis (if the immunotherapy is injected). The shots are normally applied year-round.
Important tips to remember
[acc_item title=”Conservation”]It should be kept in the fridge, avoiding its freezing. Take it out 30 minutes before the administration. Some sublingual immunotherapy do not need fridge conservation.[/acc_item]
[acc_item title=”Where should it be given”]If the vaccine is subcutaneous, you should always go to a health center, hospital or medical center. A nurse or doctor will do the procedure. Never get it in your house. [/acc_item]
[acc_item title=”After the shot”]Remain in the health center during 30 minutes. Do not rub the area. Do not exercise or workout in the next hours.[/acc_item]
[acc_item title=”Do not apply it if:”]In case of an infection (with or without fever), shortness of breath, “whistles” in your chest, if you have a flu, asthma or rhinitis crisis or are currently suffering your allergy symptoms.[/acc_item]