Allergy Drops Instead of Shots

New allergy treatment might eliminate need for shots

Do you hate getting a shot? Most people do. Well, you may soon have another option; an allergy “shot” that is conveniently delivered as drops under your tongue!

A study at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics is currently underway to examine a potentially new way to deliver allergy treatment that can eliminate those time-consuming doctor visits. In fact, you’ll be able to administer this allergy treatment “shot” yourself.

This new form of allergy treatment is called sublingual immunotherapy and is delivered via liquid treatment under your tongue twice a day. Essentially, these drops work similarly to the allergy shots by administrating a minute dose of allergen into your system in order to help your body become desensitized to the substance.

The good news for allergy sufferers is that this new approach appears to be working. Specifically, it seems to be most effective for the eyes, nose, and respiratory tract, which are the main sites of most allergic reactions.
The theory behind the oral allergy drops is similar to allergy shots that it is preventative action against allergies. Furthermore, any allergy treatment used after the allergic reaction has started is not a complete solution. Most over-the-counter drug remedies have some sort of side effect, and don’t treat the original problem – that the body is reacting to an otherwise harmless substance.

However, one of the main challenges with traditional allergy shots is the time required to get to the doctor’s office, get the shot, and then wait the required time before leaving. Besides, the shots themselves can be painful, and reactions at the site of injection can include itchiness and inflammation.

This is where oral allergy treatment provides a whole new option.

These drops are already on trial in a number of European countries, including Italy, France and Germany. However, approval is still pending in North America. 

 June 30, 2006

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