Changes coming to allergy immunotherapy

Allergy immunotherapy typically takes months to years until a complete resolution of symptoms is reached, but new methods, either ‘cluster’ or ‘rush’ immunotherapy propose a faster result. Cluster immunotherapy involves administering two to four injections at 30 minutes intervals 1 day each week for three weeks. Rush immunotherapy involves administering multiple injections 2 or 3 days in a row. Traditional immunotherapy involves administering an injection once or twice a week for about 5 months.

The data to support these new methods, presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting, in Boston, Massachusetts, US, shows that patients who receive cluster or rush immunotherapy experience the benefits more quickly. Research shows that these accelerated schedules are not only effective but safe, and also seem to fit in with people’s busy schedules.

Also under research are two new technologies: intralymphatic immunotherapy whereby the injections would be administered directly into the lymph nodes, which has proved after initial research to be longer lasting and more effective; and epicutaneous immunotherapy which involves scraping the skin slightly and administering a patch to allow the allergens to be delivered into the bloodstream.

Source: Pediatric Super Site

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First published in November 2011

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