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    Old 11-17-2005, 11:11 AM   #1
    jenanoelle
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    Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Has anyone undergone this allergy therapy? It's quite popular in Europe, but I don't know an awful lot about the availability in the US (Boston area in specific). And it'd be nice to know if people have good results with it too

    Also, if there's anyone who's done the dreaded shot, I'd be willing to try that, if the drops aren't available.. I'm at the end of my rope here. (my allergy is to dust.)

     
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    Old 11-17-2005, 06:01 PM   #2
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    I am on the drops. Getting them in La Crosse Wisconsin. I have been on them for about 1 year and 3 months. I don't think they have 'kicked' in yet. - But it can take up to a couple years. -

    At least the allergists there know something and aren't like all the idiots I have dealt with in the past!
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    Old 11-18-2005, 05:51 AM   #3
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    I have a couple of questions, please. How much do these drops cost? And what types of allergies do they cover? 3 years seems a long time for something to have to kick in.

    What about Enzyme Potentiated Desensitization (EDP as it's known in Europe) or Ultra Low Dose Enzyme Activated Immunotherapy (LDA as it's known in the US)? has anyone had any experiance with those?

    Thanks
    WW

    Last edited by astroh2o; 11-18-2005 at 05:57 AM.

     
    Old 11-19-2005, 03:40 PM   #4
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by astroh2o
    I have a couple of questions, please. How much do these drops cost? And what types of allergies do they cover? 3 years seems a long time for something to have to kick in.

    What about Enzyme Potentiated Desensitization (EDP as it's known in Europe) or Ultra Low Dose Enzyme Activated Immunotherapy (LDA as it's known in the US)? has anyone had any experiance with those?

    Thanks
    WW
    The Drops are not too expensive. Cost about $75 every couple of months. The real expense is the Doctor Appt. and Hotel and Gas which runs about $500 twice a year. - I have to travel to La Crosse Wisconsin, as the treatment is 'not approved' in Minnesota (i.e. - Allergy clinics dispensing shots would go out of business).

    The drops are mild allergen conconctions made from anything that you are allergic to. Pets, mold, pollen, dust, food etc. etc.

    Generally results are seen from about 1 1/2 years to 2 years - not 3 years - Bodies don't always react as fast as we would like them to. The process is not unlike shots, which can also take a year or two!

    But Hey! I have very few other options. - This is my last stop!
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    Last edited by Cut-Throat; 11-19-2005 at 03:43 PM.

     
    Old 11-21-2005, 10:35 AM   #5
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    I've only had shots, but they are very effective. The needles are very small, so it isn't like getting an immunization at all. The needle only goes into the skin, not the muscle so it doesn't hurt very bad at all.

    With shots you will notice an improvement in about 6 months, but it takes about 3-5 years to become fully effective. But after that time, many people are practically "cured" of their allergies and never need shots again.

    I move around too much, so I keep getting my shots interrupted, but I recently tested negative to ragweed, which I have always had an allergy to. So even with different doctors and formulas, the cummulative effect of the ragweed shots worked very well for me. If I could just stay in one place and not be exposed to different trees and molds...sigh.

     
    Old 11-21-2005, 12:44 PM   #6
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    I know the drops are available here in AL as I know someone on them. However, the long time to initial relief sort of put me off. I started my shots in November and was in good shape by spring allergy season. I was told the drops do take a couple of years to kick in. I'm finishing up the five years the last week in December so am looking forward to freedom! Sneezy, do recommend getting retested after that? I wasn't going to because I doubt I'd do the regimine again so soon. This is the 3rd time I've done the shots. Thanks!

     
    Old 09-11-2006, 07:08 AM   #7
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Having a highly allergic family (both kids experienced analpylaxis around 9 months of age--one from eggs, the other from chemical/formaldehyde sensitivity) and a husband who was extremely allergic and asthmatic as a kid, we've tried a lot of things.
    Not until we started drops over a year ago did we see any significant change. My husband is normally miserable during ragweed season and most of the spring/summer, used an inhaler frequently as well as a host of other meds. One son was in the perpetual Zertec fog, the other had eczema that wouldn't respond to cremes/etc.
    Within 3-4 months of beginning drops, my son with eczema experienced clear skin. My other son was much less congested/sniffly and his allergic shiners had noticeably decreased. My husband said he doesn't remember ever being able to breath normally before. His seasonal reactions were practically non-existent, minor help from Serevent is all he needs occasionally.
    One thing to note--allergy drops are available throughout the US--they're just not covered by insurance. Many allergists are beginning to offer them, but until the industry as a whole gets up to speed on research (there's a lot of it from Europe, and more now in the US) many people will not know this is an option for them. It pays to ask around, do a little research, and find out more. I'm thankful we were able to find help. For some people, it takes awhile to feel the effects--not true in our case. [removed]

    Last edited by mod-anon; 09-11-2006 at 08:03 AM. Reason: do not post commercial websites. Please read and follow the posting rules.

     
    Old 07-06-2007, 03:01 PM   #8
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by amph View Post
    Having a highly allergic family (both kids experienced analpylaxis around 9 months of age--one from eggs, the other from chemical/formaldehyde sensitivity) and a husband who was extremely allergic and asthmatic as a kid, we've tried a lot of things.
    Not until we started drops over a year ago did we see any significant change. My husband is normally miserable during ragweed season and most of the spring/summer, used an inhaler frequently as well as a host of other meds. One son was in the perpetual Zertec fog, the other had eczema that wouldn't respond to cremes/etc.
    Within 3-4 months of beginning drops, my son with eczema experienced clear skin. My other son was much less congested/sniffly and his allergic shiners had noticeably decreased. My husband said he doesn't remember ever being able to breath normally before. His seasonal reactions were practically non-existent, minor help from Serevent is all he needs occasionally.
    One thing to note--allergy drops are available throughout the US--they're just not covered by insurance. Many allergists are beginning to offer them, but until the industry as a whole gets up to speed on research (there's a lot of it from Europe, and more now in the US) many people will not know this is an option for them. It pays to ask around, do a little research, and find out more. I'm thankful we were able to find help. For some people, it takes awhile to feel the effects--not true in our case. [removed]
    Hello - I am very interested in your experience - have a daughter with allergies (dogs, cats, dust mites, certain pollens) - she is desparate for a dog and we would like to try this - in calling around Houston, there are Dr's (as in MD, board certified allergists) who give them - one thing of concern was that they "mix them up at the office" - is this the way shots are done? - if so, i guess the risk of a bad mix is the same as shots - how hard is it to get the right mix...as in if they get it wrong, how toxic/harmful can it be to the patient? - is there an organization or some body that cerifies these folks or can vet who has experience? - thanks in advance, ed

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 08:35 AM   #9
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    They mix all of it at the doctors' offices as far as I know...all of my injections were done that way...Someone has to do it as you couldn't commercially market the serum as there are too many combinations and strengths. It can change as you go thru the shots/drops (having to back up, lesson one, strengthen another, etc). I'd be much more secure with it mixed for me that bought already done. You need to do more resesarch about how the dosages are determined, mixed, etc. I don't know about the drops (my understanding has always been they are better for food allergies than environmental) as I've always done the shots. The usual regimen though is for you to wait in the doctor's 20 minutes or so after the injection to see what, if any, reaction you might have. Also, with injections, you can take an antihistamine the mornign of the shots. Don't know about the drops.

    Have you tried her on zyrtec? That seems to work well for pet allergies.

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 12:31 PM   #10
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    the only issue with zyrtec is the thought of having her on a medication for years - do we know what zyrtec will do to her body (liver, ovaries, etc.)? has it been around long enough to have been tested for long term effects? - the appeal of immunotherapy is that she is receiving allergens that she would be exposed to any way naturally, to varying degrees.

    thank you for the info on the mixing - that is comforting

    the internet research seems to indicate it is good for environmental allergies

    our current allergist (who does not do drops) said that if we had a dog, she would have plenty of exposure to the allergen - she was serious - and i guess she is right - does this work? - or is the exposure so high so quickly that the body is unable to build the immunity??

    thanks, ed

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 02:12 PM   #11
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    OK, let me understand this. If the mixing issue is settled in your mind, then you are willing to have your child get at least two injections a week for about 6 months and then once a month for about 4-1/2 years (this is the standard regimen from a quality allergist/immunologist) rather than take a zyrtec as needed. Have I got that right? I don't mean to sound sarcastic but I think you've got the cart way before the horse here. Just a little on my history...I'm 61 and had allergies all my life - bad ones. I've taken antihistamines since I was a child - the ones that were waaaay different than what's on the market today...all had uppers in them so you wouldn't get drowzy as the only other thing was benedryl (which is used in Tylenol PM as the sleep component!). I've done the injections 3 times in my life...teens, 30's and 50's. They last about 15 years or so. In between, as needed now, I take the meds...for the past 10-12 years or more it's been zyrtec. Great drug! NEver made me sleepy though it does some people (they recommend taking it at night just in case).

    Frankly,I wouldn't put a child under about 15- or sixteen on the shots or drop unless all other avenues had been exhausted. And trying a zyrtec for a week or two would be an excellent place to start.

    As for exposing her to a dog and it helping, yes, that can be the case. After all, with the shots or drops all you are doing is givng her the allergen as well.
    I never realized I was allergic to cigarette smoke until I quit smoking! But, depending on the dog, you might drive her over the edge.

    Since you evidently don't have her on any meds at this time, the allergies must not be too bad. I'd try the children's zyrtec and see if it helps her. If it does, then you could get a dog (preferably short hair) and then try backing off the zyrtec to every other day, etc.

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 06:30 PM   #12
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    not to worry ... appreciate the frankness - although it would be drops and not shots, yes that is what i am asking (in part) - that is, is giving the allergen itself (through shots or drops) less harmful in terms of spill on effects than a medication - if it were steriods of some sort, it would be clearly YES - zyrtec is not steriods - so what would the answer be?

    in fact, we have had her medicated - there was a time (3-5 years old) where she was taking singulair and flovent every day - on an occassion she needs albutorol if she is having an attack (wheezing and coughing).

    She seemed not to respond all that much to the singulair, so we switched to zyrtec - it definitely helps with her allergies - but my understanding is that things like zyrtec treat the symptoms of allergies and not the root cause - i further understood that immunotherapy in fact does get at the root cause and may in some cases "cure" a person such that they no longer have an allergic reaction when exposed to the allergen in "environmental" doses - as we would not want to give a young girl shots (from the needle perspective not the serum), my real question is whether drops have the same efficacy and safety as serum and if yes, am i correct that immunotherapy in fact is less harmful than medications such as zyertec? one other thing i heard is that immunotherapy for allergies may be therapuetic for asthma and may either lessen or eliminate asthma as she gets older.

    To sum up the questions:

    is injected immunotherapy (allergy shots) as safe in terms of long term use and side effects?

    if yes, are drops equally as safe?

    separately, are these therapies effective in not only treating the symptoms, but also possibly elimnating the root cause?

    would a medication such as zyrtec be more harmful if used over a span of years? [assumption here is that we would be back to daily (not occassional) use with a dog around]

    Last edited by edl; 07-07-2007 at 06:50 PM.

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 08:21 PM   #13
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Yes, controlling the allergies can definitely help with the asthma. I didn't find singulair to be helpful either. (My asthma was adult onset, not childhood.)

    Childhood asthma, as I am sure you know, can be outgrown and often is. However, Allergies cannot be "cured." Whether you are doing either of the style of injectables or the oral, at some point in the future you will have to do it all over again. And the longer you live, the more often you will have to do it....my case as described before is fairly typical. In between, you will need antihistamines off and on.

    As I said, I have been on and off them for over 50 years with no side effects of any kind other than the jitters that the old style non-drowzy formulas would give you. Am glad for the new generation of them such as zyrtec.

    Bottom line is that nothing will permanently "cure" her allergies. They may change over time - what's the worst now may be lesser with another more serious. Mine certainly have though ragweed has always been the worst.
    And when I say "worse" or "better" I mean as determined by the scratch test.

    You can certainly try the drops...there should be no harm in a few rounds of that - to see if it helps her. If not, you're back where you started. Anyway, I can only tell you my personal experience.

    But I do caution you about just "calling around' to find someone who does the drops. There are a lot of doctors out there who graduated last in medical school...and you don't know who they are. Make sure the allergist/immunologist you use is board certified and well respected by OTHER DOCS in your community. In fact, if your pediatriciation wouldn't take his kid there, then neither should you.

     
    Old 07-07-2007, 08:47 PM   #14
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    mny thx - ed

     
    Old 04-09-2008, 04:16 PM   #15
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    Re: Sublingual Immunotherapy (allergy drops)

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jenanoelle View Post
    Has anyone undergone this allergy therapy? It's quite popular in Europe, but I don't know an awful lot about the availability in the US (Boston area in specific). And it'd be nice to know if people have good results with it too

    Also, if there's anyone who's done the dreaded shot, I'd be willing to try that, if the drops aren't available.. I'm at the end of my rope here. (my allergy is to dust.)
    You might try Allernone which is a non-prescription sublingual for allergies to dust, mold, pollen, grass, etc.

     
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