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  • Shots? Are they worth it?

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    Old 09-19-2005, 11:04 AM   #1
    zekat
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    Shots? Are they worth it?

    My husband has suffered from allergy problems as long as he can remember. As long as I've been with him, I have ridden him to see an Allergist. Well, FINALLY he did! Turns out he is allergic to a lot of things, but the number one reaction was to dust mites. My DH, I guess, has always been very good about vac****** our house & even our bed w/ a Kirby he bought specifically because of allergies. Anyhow- he went ahead and signed up for the shots. I am more of a holistic girl myself, so I feel weird about him having injections with us having done little to no research. Zyrtek has worked well for him, but I hate to see him have to stay on it every day for the rest of his life if these shots can actually help his immunity.

    Does anyone have any first-hand experience and would you recommend the shots to someone else that suffers constant stuffiness & watery eyes?

    TIA

     
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    Old 09-19-2005, 11:53 AM   #2
    knk63
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    as someone who did the shots for many years, i would say they are worth it! i think its fairly subtle though, so he should not expect to feel wonderful after a few shots; its very time consuming....i was on them the first time for 2 years and the second time for three, i have been without now for 2 years and am going back on them. i only stopped because we moved so many times, i was tired of getting started with one dr. only to move again! one of the nurses once told me that you dont always notice a big difference in how you feel until you stop the injections, and i believe she was right. i have been miserable for that past several months that i can wait to get back on them!

     
    Old 09-19-2005, 12:05 PM   #3
    Jennita
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by zekat
    My husband has suffered from allergy problems as long as he can remember. As long as I've been with him, I have ridden him to see an Allergist. Well, FINALLY he did! Turns out he is allergic to a lot of things, but the number one reaction was to dust mites. My DH, I guess, has always been very good about vac****** our house & even our bed w/ a Kirby he bought specifically because of allergies. Anyhow- he went ahead and signed up for the shots. I am more of a holistic girl myself, so I feel weird about him having injections with us having done little to no research. Zyrtek has worked well for him, but I hate to see him have to stay on it every day for the rest of his life if these shots can actually help his immunity.

    Does anyone have any first-hand experience and would you recommend the shots to someone else that suffers constant stuffiness & watery eyes?

    TIA
    Well, I had them during the latter half of my childhood. I'd say I did notice alot less problems with allergies several years later and now I hardly have any problems except maybe with the heaviest offenders like hay and certain grasses but the rest have vanished. It isn't an instant cure but it does seem to work, at least in my own case. I don't even get sick that much anymore, haven't been to a doc in years and I don't even need OTC stuff either.

    I would say it although it isn't "natural", it is a bit like holistic because it is a gradual exposure to weakened versions of your allergens that causes your body on it's own to develop resistance to them. At least that's what I had way back when I don't know if that's how they do it now.

     
    Old 09-19-2005, 12:26 PM   #4
    smc612
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    just my opinion!!! they did not work for me. i had to get 4 a week and saw no difference after 2 years. i had my last one on july 18th and don't see any difference without them. i have great health insurance but still had to pay my co-pay every week. i am happy and feel good with a singulair and a zyrtec every night.

     
    Old 09-19-2005, 01:11 PM   #5
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I am finishing up a 5 year regimen of them come December. This is the 3rd time in my life I have been on them....am 59 years old now. I have had great success both times in the past and feel this time will bejsut as good. The two earlier rounds lasted about 20 years and if I get that out of these I'll be 79 and probably won't care any more!
    I highly recommend them but it does take dedication and focus...and it will take time before he sees any improvement....and he may backslide at some point...I did this time around and we upped my dosage and that seem to take care of it. Everyone is different and you just have to fiddle with it. No one size fits all with this. Good luck!

     
    Old 09-19-2005, 05:48 PM   #6
    zekat
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    Thank you all so much for your experiences. I feel so much better reading your responses. I guess I'm a little paranoid to a degree and not knowing exactly what the shots are all about kind of scares me. However, the majority of you seem to feel that the shots have helped, so that really gives me hope that he will eventually get some relief. I read all of your responses to him and I think he has a pretty good handle on the fact that he is going to have to be dedicated to this if he really wants it to work and I think he really wants it to work.
    Thanks again!!

     
    Old 09-19-2005, 11:07 PM   #7
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I second all the people who say shots make a big difference. I wholeheartedly reccommend shots. But hopefully your allergist told you about the dustmite proof covers for your mattress and boxspring, and pillows. These are essential if you have a dustmite allergy. Also, a HEPA filter in the bedroom is a huge help not just for dust, but any pollens he is allergic to. Good luck with the shots!

     
    Old 10-08-2005, 05:24 PM   #8
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I COMPLETELY agree that shots are worth it... Let me give you some history, I am 19, and "sensitive" should be my middle name... haha... I have had severe allergies for a long time, choosing to buck it up though as opposed to giving up my favorite hobbies. However, as it always does, stress seems to further upset things, and some major changes in my life have taken place over the last few years. I was against the shots for a long time, because I saw it as something which was more annoyance than they were worth... until I got to the point where I was mixing OTC and several perscription pills just so I could function and not feel like perpetual crap... not to mention the horrible migraines and other things that were associated.

    I gave in... and got the needle test... the "most" accurate of the methods because it allows the dr to know just "how" allergic you are to something and thus mix the appropriate amounts which allows you to work up to a maintanance dose by increasing incrimentlly. I came out allergic to all but one out of... well A LOT... they jokingly were in negotiations to get me a bubble and be done with it.

    I started with a -1 dilution... it made me feel honestly the first time like I was hit multiple times with a truck... and I went back irrate. They weakened the dilution to -2... and things were amazing... after the first few doses I feel great... Now I am almost up to a "0" dilution and I still feel great, about one tenth of the headaches and general nastiness feelings...

    I know I have a long way to go before I get to the "5" vial... but even now it is to the point where I look forward to giving myself my shots, and I totally feel it if I miss a day...

    Hope this helps...

    Heather

    PS: I am the typo queen, forgive me :-P

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 02:43 AM   #9
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I was taking shots about 8 years ago, and I did not have any positive experiences with them. I was in Jr. High at the time, and it was too disruptive to my schedule. I could not do any after-school sports, because I had to be driven to the clinic before they closed at 6 every day.

    I was told that once I started the injections, I had to keep with them, take them regularly, or any possible benefit would be lost and I would have to "start all over".

    So I had my shots after school, 1 injection in each arm, and it depended on the nurse giving them, but they were usually quite painfull. Then I was required to wait for 1/2 hour in the lobby to see if I had any allergic reactions to the shots. No amount of promises to return to the clinic, should I have any symptoms like rashes or itching could make them let me go.

    My doses were kept in little bottles that had to be refridgerated. They also had to be kept at the clinic...they had to be given by a nurse, and then I had to be observed after the shots. You can't take them home with you, or on vacation and give them to yourself like a diabetic.

    After about 8 months of these shots, I believe it was 2 times a week, I did not feel any better. I planned to go on a school trip overseas, and told the nurses about it. They told me to cancell my vacation, miss the trip of a lifetime, because I could not take my shots with me (refridgeration required) and finding nurses/doctors to administer the shots out of the country would be a nightmare, even if I could take them with me.

    I went on my trip, and never went back to the clinic...I didn't see any results after 8 months and sure as heck didn't want to start all over again.

    -Kathryn in Portland, OR

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 05:52 AM   #10
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    8 months really may not have been long enough...it all depends on the individual and how allergic you are. You did't say how long the trip was supposed to be but they ca work around those things if only a week...go in the day before and the day after. I had to do that once when I started them and was on 2 times per week. We just worked it out and had to back up a little on the dosages and then go forward. When in the allergy cycle you start your shots also makes a difference. For most people who have tree, grass, other pollen allergies, NOvember is the time to start because nothing much is blooming/growing. I was told I would have to wait until November to start mine. They wanted a log stretch when I wouldn't be exposed to as many of my allergies as possible...and ragweed is number one so we had to wait till after ragweed season in my area. So, that should be taken into account as well.

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 07:08 AM   #11
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I took allergy shots for 4 years and then was retested. THe only thing it did for me was reduce my allergic reaction to dust mites. That might have been my bigggest problem, though. But on my restest I am more sensitive to other things. So I kind of traded some problems to other problems. Something else that was weird. Before I started the shots, I was tested for asthma did NOT have it, but after 4 years on the retest I DO NOW have asthma. I don't know why that would happen, just an observation on my part.

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 10:56 AM   #12
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    Hi, I definetely believe allergy shots are successful. I take Allegra D, Flonase and Astelin daily and still have allergy symptoms. I have recently started my third round of shots. I was off shots for a total of 17 months prior to starting them again in August. I look forward to the day when my immunity has built up a tolerance again and I can stop the prescription drugs. It takes awhile to see results (every individual is different), so be patient.

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 11:55 AM   #13
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    Howitt44: Have you had "walking pneumonia" or bronchitis since you were tested for asthma before? If so, that's what caused it. Walking pneumonia is what caused mine.

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 12:06 PM   #14
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    I usually get bronchitis once a year, but about 10 years ago, I had a really back time with it. My test for asthma that was negative was about 7 years ago and then the test that was positive was 3 years ago. So the bad case of bronchitis was before all of that. The weird part about it all was I thought the shots were working because I hadn't been getting sick in the winter. I didn't have the congestion, ect. Then they do the retest and said I had asthma. I was floored. I did have occasional tightness but nothing major or nothing I though was asthma symptoms. Sometimes I doubt the diagnosis. But now I am and have been on Advair for about one year and it has helped a lot.

     
    Old 10-10-2005, 12:33 PM   #15
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    Re: Shots? Are they worth it?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Howitt44
    I took allergy shots for 4 years and then was retested. THe only thing it did for me was reduce my allergic reaction to dust mites. That might have been my bigggest problem, though. But on my restest I am more sensitive to other things. So I kind of traded some problems to other problems.
    Everyone's immune system is somewhat different. Even so, if the allergist does not select the proper mix, the shots won't work as well. I took allergy shots for about a year. Each time, the mixture became darker, until after a year, the allergy shot mix was black. When they injected me, my heartbeat would race and my blood pressure would soar. The allergist told me not to worry about the effect on my heart and blood pressure, but I did not trust his opinion and stopped the shots.

    It really helped my sinus allergy. I had chronically nasty sinus problems, and the shots significantly improved my sinus problems. It didn't take away my sinus problems, but it really helped, as long as I stayed away from foods and other items which could cause sinus misery.

    However....... I think that the allergy shots were too strong and were an attack on my immune system that resulted in long term problems with my blood pressure and heart rhythm.

    Quote:
    Something else that was weird. Before I started the shots, I was tested for asthma did NOT have it, but after 4 years on the retest I DO NOW have asthma. I don't know why that would happen, just an observation on my part.
    When I started the shots, I was not having any problems with my asthma. My asthma had been in remission for a couple of years. As my sinus condition improved, my asthma got worse. I an convinced that the shots brought back my asthma problems. When I told the allergist that I was now having problems with my asthma, the quack disagreed with me. He told me that I had always had problems with asthma, except that, with my sinuses were so bad, I didn't notice the asthma. DIDN'T NOTICE THE ASTHMA!!!??? WHAT AN IDIOT! I don't care how bad my sinuses were, there is no way in hell that I would not notice that I couldn't breathe. Anyone who has ever suffered from an asthma attack easily realizes that they can't breathe. I was astounded that a medical professional could be so short sighted and stupid. Needless to say, I never went back to him.

     
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