If you hate needles even more than you hate allergies, there may be some new needle-free allergy relief for you. Earlier this year the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new oral immunotherapy pill for the treatment of certain allergies in the U.S. The pill works similar to an allergy shot by helping your body gradually get small amounts of your allergy trigger over time. Here are a few things you need to know about the new treatment to see if it is an option for you.
- Convenience: Unlike allergy shots that have to given by your doctor in the office, the pill dissolves under your tongue (Note: Only the first dose needs to be given in the allergist’s office.)
- Less risk of adverse reactions: Both the shot and pill come with potential risk of harmful side effects. The allergy pill isn’t as strong as the shot, which may lower the risk of serious reactions like hives or anaphylaxis.
- Only available for specific allergies: If you are allergic to cats, mold or tree pollen, the current oral remedies are not for you unfortunately. Currently, the approved pills only treat grass and ragweed allergies. Shots, on the other hand, work for various triggers.
- Limited use: Most people have allergies year-round and the pill is only beneficial to people suffering from allergies during grass season. Doctors can customize the medicine in a shot to address specific allergies as needed.
If you suffer from severe grass or ragweed allergies, the new oral remedies may be an option worth looking into. Consult your allergist to determine what treatment is best for you.
Visit the BlackDoctor.org Allergy center for more articles.