Allergy Shots (Immunotherapy)
Allergy Shots work to treat your allergies unlike antihistamines and steroids that only mask allergy symptoms. At Advanced Specialty Care, Allergy Shots are frequently and successfully used to treat several common allergens. Under the supervision of our Allergists, Allergy Shots are administered during in our office and over time, the dosage is increased.
Before any treatment is started, our Allergy and Asthma Specialists will evaluate your allergy triggers in order to develop the proper treatment plan that is right for you.
Advanced Specialty Care’s Asthma and Allergy specialists have several offices throughout Connecticut in Norwalk, New Milford, Ridgfield and Danbury, CT. To schedule an appointment for Allergy Shots, or any other Allergy and Asthma condition, please contact our office at (203) 830-4700.
What are allergy shots?
Simply put: allergy shots (immunotherapy) treat the problem, while medication only treats the symptoms. Allergy shots are a more natural way to treat allergies, as opposed to steroid sprays and anti-histamines. Allergy shots consist of the administration of increasing doses of the allergens (such as pet dander, pollen, dust, mold, etc.) that trigger allergy and asthma symptoms.
Allergy shots result in the body becoming tolerant to your allergic triggers. This tolerance leads to a decrease of the inflammation that causes allergy and asthma symptoms. This decrease of inflammation, and the allergy/asthma symptoms they cause, can lower your need for medications.
Do allergy shots really work?
Allergy shots are not only helpful in relieving your hay fever/asthma symptoms while you are receiving the shots, but studies show allergy shots have long term benefits, even after the shots are stopped.
A study in 2006 has shown that over 10 years after stopping allergy shots, patients still had significantly less hay fever symptoms compared to those who did not receive shots. They were also significantly less likely to develop new allergies.
The practice parameters of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, which governs best practices for all allergists across the nation, states:
“Numerous well-designed controlled studies demonstrate that allergen immunotherapy is efficacious in the treatment of allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, allergic asthma and stinging insect hypersensitivity. Randomized controlled studies showed that allergen immunotherapy prevents the development of asthma in subjects with allergic rhinitis”
Can allergy shots prevent asthma?
Studies show that up to 60% of asthmatics have allergies. These allergies can be triggers for asthma. Treating your allergies is often an effective way to lower your need for asthma medication, decrease asthma symptoms, and improve your quality of life.
A landmark 10 year research study published in 2007, showed that allergy shots can prevent the development of asthma. The study placed half of their patients on allergy shots for 3 years, while the others did not receive allergy shots. These patients were monitored for years after stopping allergy shots. There was an almost 50% reduction in the likelihood of developing asthma in those who received allergy shots, compared to those who did not receive allergy shots.
Clinical and Translational Allergy. Allergen specific immunotherapy provides immediate, long term, and preventative clinical effects in children and adults: the effects of immunotherapy can be categorized by level of benefit-the centenary of allergen specific subcutaneous immunotherapy. Jacobsen, L. April 2012.
Allergy. Twelve year follow up after discontinuation of preseasonal grass pollen immunotherapy in childhood. Eng, P. February 2006.
Allergy. Specific immunotherapy has long term preventative effect of seasonal and perennial asthma: 10 year follow up on the PAT study. Jacobsen, L. August 2007.
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America