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What is desensitization treatment?


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2014-12-13 19:21:41
2014-12-13 19:21:41

One treatment for inhalant allergies is desensitization. This is not available for food allergies. In desensitization treatment, the patient is injected with small, dilute extracts of the inhalant allergens. The dosage is gradually built up, until the body is less sensitive to the allergen. This is a slow process, involving months to years for a complete treatment, though there is benefit even after a few months for many. Initially, the patient receives two shots per week. This is reduced to one shot a week, then one every other week over time. The initial treatment, however, involves visits to the doctor (or a medical place that will do the injections) rather regularly. The actual time to get the injection is about 20 minutes -- the injection is quick, but the patient is usually asked to wait in the office for about 20 minutes to see if a reaction develops. These reactions occur in a small percentage of patients but they need to be treated promptly. Desensitization can also be used for insect sting allergies. Your doctor will know whether this is an appropriate treatment in your particular case.

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