Types of Allergy Treatments Available
Subcutaneous Immunotherapy (Shots)
Subcutaneous immunotherapy (SCIT) can help patients suffering from allergic rhinitis (hay fever). While antihistamines and nasal corticosteroid medications can provide some temporary relief, subcutaneous immunotherapy has helped many patients achieve long-term relief of allergic rhinitis symptoms.
What’s involved in subcutaneous immunotherapy?
SCIT is administered through allergy shots given by a trained medical professional under the supervision on an allergist or immunologist. There are two phases to SCIT treatment: the build-up phase and the maintenance phase.
Phase one involves the administration of shots once or twice a week. The dosage levels of the shots are gradually increased building up until an effective level found.
In the second phase, shots are spaced out over a longer period of time. The patient may receive one shot every two to four weeks in most cases. The dosage of the shot is kept the same throughout the maintenance phase unless the allergist finds reason to increase the amount.
Sublingual Immunotherapy (Tablets)
Although often effective in providing long-term allergy relief to patients, it can be difficult to continually visit an allergist’s office in order to receive treatment on a bi-weekly or monthly basis. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved immunotherapy in the form of oral tablets. Known as sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT), allergy tablets are taken orally once per day to relieve allergy symptoms.
Are both SCIT and SLIT treatments effective?
While every case is unique, both shots and tablets have been shown to provide significant relief of allergy symptoms in patients that received treatment regularly as prescribed by an allergist.
Are allergy shots and tablets considered safe?
Both allergy shots and tablets are considered safe treatment options for allergy sufferers. Shots should only be administered by trained medical professionals in an office setting, while tablets may be taken at home; however, patients and/or parents of patients should watch closely for any side effects that may occur. Patients on allergy tablets may carry an epinephrine auto-injector in case of allergic reaction.
To learn more about your treatment options, give us a call. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and assist you in taking the next step in getting the relief you deserve.