IMMUNOTHERAPY (ALLERGY SHOTS): Hyposensitization or “allergy shots” are given to certain selected patients to immunize them against allergens that account for their symptoms. Many allergic patients do not need allergy shots for resolution or treatment of their symptoms. Medications and/or environmental changes are frequently sufficient to control symptoms in these individuals. The only patients who are placed on shots are those in whom other types of therapy have failed or in whom additional therapy is needed.
Allergy shots are very effective, but it takes TIME! Hyposensitization means “turning down” the patients allergic recognition of common allergens (pollens, molds, dust, animal dander). During the first 6 to 18 months on the allergy shots, there is a gradual decrease in sensitivity to the allergens. Continuation of the injections leads to further improvement.
Remember, allergy injections do not “cure” all patients, but sensitivities are decreased. This means that you will experience fewer symptoms and that fewer medications are required. Maintaining shots at the proper time interval is important. However, missing shots for a short vacation or because of some other problem in obtaining injections is usually acceptable.