SINUS & ALLERGY
Suffer from Hay Fever
Adults affected by nasal allergies (US)
Kids affected by nasal allergies (US)
leading cause of chronic illness in US
The average adult has three to five respiratory infections per year. These usually begin with sneezing and nasal drainage, with subsequent development of thick mucus, nasal congestion, sore throat and coughing. These can last 7 to 10 days and are usually viral infections that cause sinus inflammation, which do NOT improve with antibiotic therapy. A bacterial sinus infection is usually defined as persistent symptoms that last about 10 to 14 days.
ENT, Sinus & Allergy Clinic offer Allergy testing and Allergy therapy at two locations. Use our Contact Form or call 615-740-5233 for the Dickson office location or 615-988-9787 for the Skyline office location for appointments.
What is Allergy Immunotherapy (IT)?
Allergy Immunotherapy (allergy shots) is a clinically documented treatment that considerably reduces or completely removes your allergy symptoms and the need for traditional, symptom-relieving medication. After three to six months, your need for drugs may decrease and your symptoms may become less severe. An additional effect of allergy shots is that it may prevent the onset of other allergies and the development of asthma. Also, the treatment has a long- standing effect after it is discontinued. New scientific studies have shown that results are maintained for 5 to 10 years after the course of allergy shots has been completed. Among the wide variety of treatment possibilities available today, allergy Immunotherapy is the only treatment that targets the cause of allergy and alters the natural course of the disease, which for many patients may lead to an improved quality of life.
How is IT Performed?
The process of IT begins with the injection of a weak concentration of an allergen extract. Injections of increasingly stronger concentrations are given until the patient reaches the top or “maintenance dose”. The rate at which the concentration is increased depends on the patients’ degree of sensitivity. Most patients are treated for three to five years, sometimes linger. Drastic improvements in allergic symptoms can usually be seen within the first few months of treatment.
Effectiveness of IT
IT is the only treatment to address the underlying cause of allergy. Many clinical studies have shown that 80-90% of patients’ allergies improve and that the treatment remains effective for at least 6 years after IT is discontinued.
Indications for IT
IT usually indicated in those patients where:
• Symptoms are moderate to severe and occur more than 2-3 months each year
• Symptomatic medications have been unsuccessful
• Patient prefers IT over long-term drug treatment
• Allergens are not easily avoided
• The possibility exists to prevent more severe allergies or asthma
Possible Side Effects of IT
Although IT has been proven to be highly effective in treating the underlying cause of allergies, patients on IT may experience side effects. Some individuals may experience itching and redness at the site of injection, while others may experience local swelling and soreness 8-12 hours after injection. Although these local reactions may produce discomfort, they are not serious. Serious systemic reactions can occur, but they are rare.
Sublingual Allergy Immunotherapy (SLIT)
Sublingual allergy Immunotherapy (allergy drops) is an alternative to injection therapy. The results are the same with less side effects. Allergy serum drops are placed under the tongue daily and can be administered at home by the patient.
Do Insurance Companies Cover Allergy Immunotherapy?
Most insurance companies cover Allergy testing and Allergy Shot therapy and No insurance company covers Sublingual therapy.
Pollen.com – Great web site for allergy information and local pollen counts.
AAAAI.org – Web site for allergy information, links and pollen counts.
Weather.com – Helpful information about pollen/mold counts.
Foodallergy.org – Useful information and links for people who suffer with food allergies.