What is Immunotherapy and Can It Cure My Allergies?

Allergen-specific immunotherapy was first introduced over 100 years ago for the treatment of grass pollen allergies (hay fever). These days, individuals with seasonal allergies, indoor allergies, bee sting allergies, allergic rhinitis, and even certain types of asthma find long-lasting relief from their symptoms with immunotherapy.

Dr. Benjamin Laracuente is a top-rated pulmonologist with a thriving practice – Tristate Pulmonary Medical Practice – in Monaca, Pennsylvania. Serving residents throughout Beaver County and the greater Pittsburgh metropolitan region, Dr. Laracuente excels at designing customized treatment strategies for patients with allergies, which may include immunotherapy.

Read what this experienced specialist has to say about the benefits of allergen-specific immunotherapy.

Understanding the basics of immunotherapy

Immunotherapy is designed to calm your immune system’s overreaction to normally harmless substances (allergens) it has mistaken for toxins that threaten your health.

Also referred to as allergy shots, immunotherapy can provide relief from:

Because immunotherapy is allergen-specific, it’s imperative you have testing that accurately identifies your allergens before you begin treatments.

At Tristate Pulmonary, we offer highly accurate in-office allergy testing as well as pulmonary function tests when necessary (depending on your symptoms) to detect and treat allergy-induced asthma.

Who benefits from immunotherapy?

Immunotherapy is typically considered for individuals who:

Dr. Laracuente may also recommend immunotherapy if you have an allergy to bee, wasp, or other venomous insect stings since these are known to produce severe, life-threatening allergic reactions.

What to expect

At Tristate Pulmonary, immunotherapy is delivered via a series of injections that contain small but increasing levels of the allergen(s) that trigger your overactive immune response. Over time, this causes your immune system to ignore the allergy trigger.

It’s important to note that allergy-induced asthma or allergies to insect stings can cause life-threatening reactions that require immediate medical attention. Thus, we do recommend that patients with these types of allergies continue to keep a rescue inhaler or injectable epinephrine on hand to use in case of an emergency.

Otherwise, immunotherapy can effectively eliminate your need for seasonal or daily allergy medications. While it can’t technically “cure” your allergies, immunotherapy can make you and your immune system forget you ever had a problem.

For effective allergy treatment that starts with an accurate diagnosis of your triggers, schedule a visit at Tristate Pulmonary Medical Practice today. Call the office or request an appointment online.

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