Duration of Allergy Injections
Q: My new Allergist retested me for allergies for mold and trees. I tested positive for 28. I have been taking allergy shots for 43 years monthly. Yes, 43 years. I am 56 years old. My new doctor suggested that I stop taking allergy shots because she said they are no longer benefiting me. I am so confused. I have not had a cold and allergy problems for the past 20 years. I am so afraid that if I stop taking the shots, I will get sick again. I am so lucky to be very healthy and I attribute that to my allergy shots. What do you think? I just spent 1 hour on the web reading aaai and acaai and can't find a page where this addressed. The only I found was that I may feel good for 3 yrs. Isn't my body relying on these shots after 43 years. Please respond as soon as possible. My doctor wants me to make up my mind. She will keep me as a patient and continue to give me my regular shots for only 1 more year.
A: The most prudent path is to stop the shots for a while and see how the patient does. The three year concept comes from a study that only lasted 3 years and so the study didn't answer what truly happens- and that is some people are "cured forever", in others symptoms come back. My own policy is to recommend after 5 years that patients quit and see how they do. Many patients over the years stay well, others need to resume allergy shots. In that case after another 5 years they don't want to quit again and I understand that. I think the allergist's recommendation is sound since skin tests can be positive and patients are not symptomatic from the allergies. I hope this discussion is helpful.