What Is Immunotherapy?
Immunotherapy means giving your body what you are allergic to in small amounts, gradually increasing the amount over time, to train your body to become immune/tolerant to the thing for which you are allergic. In other words, it cures you of your allergies.
What Does Immunotherapy Treat?
Immunotherapy works well for Hayfever (itchy eyes, congested/runny/sneezy nose). It also works well for Allergy-induced Asthma. Children with asthma who do Immunotherapy treatments are 50% more likely to outgrow their asthma. Immunotherapy is for individuals as young as age 5, up to any age.
What Are the Options?
One to two injections (depending on the severity of your allergy) in the arm(s), given in the clinic, once a week for the first 12 months, then every two weeks for two more years for a total of three years. You can also use liquid drops placed under the tongue daily for three years, which you give yourself at home.
How Effective Is Immunotherapy?
Immunotherapy is about 85-90% effective in treating the specific allergen for which you may suffer. In other words, about 9 out of 10 people will have life-long relief from their allergies if they complete the three years of treatment. It takes about three to six months of treatment before allergy symptoms begin to subside.
What Is the Cost?
Immunotherapy (or allergy shots) is covered by Medicaid, Medicare, and most commercial insurance plans, although you may have to meet your deductible. Most insurances don’t require a co-pay when you come in for an allergy shot. Most insurance companies don’t cover allergy drops. A three-month supply of drops is about $110 for one vile or $160 for two vials (two vials may be necessary if we can’t fit all your allergens into a single vial).
How Do I Get Started?
Start by getting tested for common allergens, including local pollens, molds, dust mites, trees, grass, weeds, pets, etc. Based on these results, allergy drops/shots will be made specifically for you.
Dr. David Beckstead MD and his specially trained medical assistants perform allergy skin tests and administer allergy shots at our Spanish Fork location. Call 801-798-7301 and ask to schedule an allergy skin testing appointment with one of Dr. Beckstead’s skilled assistants.
David Beckstead, MD
Canyon View Medical Group