Allergies occur when your body reacts abnormally to a substance that shouldn’t cause any harm. Depending on the type of allergy, you may experience many different symptoms, including:
Some more serious allergies may even cause anaphylaxis, which is a potentially life-threatening reaction that requires immediate treatment.
Your immune system is responsible for protecting your body from foreign substances that could cause harm or illness, such as viruses, bacteria, or parasites. Allergies occur when your immune system recognizes a harmless substance as a pathogen and reacts to it. The immune system produces antibodies to the substance, and you experience a reaction any time you encounter it.
Doctors don’t know exactly what causes patients to develop allergies. However, you may be more likely to have allergies if you have a family history of this condition.
Allergy testing allows Dr. Chew or Dr. Louie to determine which specific substances cause your allergy symptoms.
One of the most common allergy tests is a skin prick test. During this test, the doctor pricks or scratches your skin in several locations. Drops of possible allergens are placed in each of the scratches to determine whether they cause a reaction.
Depending on your symptoms, Dr. Chew or Dr. Louie may also recommend certain blood tests.
If you’re diagnosed with allergies, several different treatments may be beneficial. One way to avoid allergy symptoms is simply to avoid the allergen itself. However, this isn’t always possible. You may also benefit from antihistamines designed to reduce your symptoms.
If your allergies don’t respond to these treatments, Dr. Chew or Dr. Louie may recommend immunotherapy. This treatment involves a series of injections of a purified form of the allergen that causes your symptoms. These injections are usually given over a period of months or years.
If your allergies cause anaphylaxis, you’ll need to carry an injectable medication with you to stop severe attacks. You’ll also need to be careful to avoid the allergen that causes your symptoms.
At Pacific ENT, we accept most major insurance plans. Here is a short-list of just some of the most popular plans we accept and for the full list, please click here. Please contact our office if you do not see your insurance provider listed here.