Immunotherapy Injections for Hay Fever

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During the spring and summer months, many individuals suffer from the debilitating symptoms of hay fever.  With an abundance of pollens in the air, itchy eyes and nose, runny eyes and nose, sneezing, and fatigue can plague many individuals to distraction. There are many different treatment options available for people suffering from hay fever today. One of these options involves a process called immunotherapy.

Immunotherapy is a method used to help your body become less allergic to certain allergens, or things that cause you to have an allergic reaction (pollen in this case). Initially your GP will run a series of skin prick or skin patch tests on you to help identify what pollens circulating in the air are causing your hay fever symptoms. Once this has been established, your GP will then design a course of injections for you. Each injection will contain a tiny amount of the pollen (or pollens) you are allergic to. Over a course of many weeks, the amount of the pollen in the injection will increase steadily. This helps the body to become less and less sensitive to the offending pollen. Injections are initially administered once a week for two months, then fortnightly for a period of time. The frequency will decrease steadily as the dosage increases until the injections are given once every six weeks. This will then carry on for up to three years. By this time, the body will have become so used to encountering the initial allergen that subsequent exposure will no longer alert the immune system to what it previously thought was a danger. Hay fever symptoms should all but disappear.

Although an effective treatment, it is very time consuming and not for everyone. It is important to discuss all of your options before deciding on a particular course of action that will best suit your lifestyle. It is important to understand the risks associated with immunotherapy. For some people who are severely allergic to pollens, even injecting a tiny amount could cause a potentially fatal anaphylactic response resulting in death. It is very important to be properly monitored during this type of treatment for any adverse effects.  It is not a course of treatment to be taken lightly. You will have to commit to years of injections and even then it may not always work for you. But for those that find it successful, it offers a long lasting cure for those suffering from the problematic symptoms of  hay fever. For those that suffer from very strong allergies to grass pollens, immunotherapy has been proven to offer a very significant level of relief during the hay fever season for up to three years. After this another course of injections will need to be undertaken for continued relief.

Most of the treatment on the market today for hay fever, such as antihistamines and decongestants serve only to address the symptoms as they occur. Immunotherapy is the only hay fever treatment that actually cures the symptoms of the allergy altogether.

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Guide to Hay Fever