Allergy Shots or Drops

Immunotherapy for Allergies

MENT photo 03.05.14 006Immunotherapy is the only allergy treatment that has the potential to cure the disease. It gets at the cause of the problem, rather than to just treat the symptoms. Most physicians agree that immunotherapy is underutilized and we are really seeing that with the new asthma guidelines as well as in treatment recommendations for eosinophilic esophagitis.

Interestingly, Immunotherapy involves the administration of the substances that trigger allergies to the patient on a regular basis. Although it seems counterintuitive, it seems to correct the immune system’s hyper-responsiveness. Currently immunotherapy can be administered as subcutaneous shots or as an under the tongue tablet or drops.

Allergy Shots Allergy Drops
Method of Administration Shot in the Arm(s) A Drop Under the Tongue
Insurance Coverage Yes NO
Risk of Anaphylaxis Small None Reported
Adverse Reactions Multiple (Swelling, Itching, Hay fever, etc.) Nausea, Itching/Swelling/Tingling in the Mouth
Physician Visit Required? Weekly for Years Every 6-12 Months
Allergy Testing Required Yes (every 1-3 years depending on the allergy profile) Yes (every 1-3 years depending on the allergy profile)
Insurance Coverage for Allergy Testing Yes for Most Insurances Yes for Most Insurances
Contraindications? Yes (beta-blockers, history of anaphylaxis, young children, infants; severe asthmatics) NO
Duration of Treatment 3-5+ years 3-5+ years
Treatment Frequency Every 1 to 4 weeks Once/Daily
Treatment Location Physician Office on Build-Up; Home on Maintenance if not asthmatic. Home
FDA Approved? Yes Off-Label (Currently Pending)
Effective? Yes Yes
Cost Per Insurance Carrier $100 for 2 month supply (less than $12 a week)

Allergy Drop Facts

Posted by: on