Frequently Asked Questions

General (4)

How about sublingual drops (under the tongue) vs. allergy injections?

As of 2009 sublingual immunotherapy is not FDA approved, so no insurance company will pay for this therapy. Also, there is currently no good scientific evidence that this therapy works for multiple allergens, i.e. more than one pollen. The studies that do show it works at all, only show about half the effectiveness of injection therapy. And furthermore, it is only effective if you take it every single day and never forget.

Do other doctors offer allergy services?

Yes, in today’s commercial world, Urgent Care centers, ENT physicians and even general doctors offer allergy services. However, they have not completed a two (2) year allergy fellowship, and are not Board Certified or Board Eligible in Allergy/Immunology. In fact, they may have no specialty training in Immunology or Allergy at all, and would likely be unable to handle any asthma related issues either.

Do I need a referral to see an allergy specialist?

You may, if you have an HMO type insurance. However, some HMO’s like Blue Cross/Blue Shield, often do not require a referral if the doctor is on their panel of physicians. Call the customer service number on you insurance card to be sure.

Are allergy injections the only way to treat allergies?

No, there are numerous pharmacological treatments available. An allergist is an expert in their usage. Also, determining what you are allergic to may help, as changing your environment slightly may result in symptomatic improvement.