Battling Allergies

9 years 9 months 1 week ago December 17, 2006 Dec 17, 2006 Sunday, December 17 2006 Sunday, December 17, 2006 10:31:19 PM CST in News

If you suffer from them, you know allergies can really get you down. KOMU's Amy Willenbrink talks to doctors who are battling it out over which historic treatment can help control future allergy problems.

Matt Reedy visits the office of allergist Wes Stricker to get his allergy treatments.

"This is the third year, so it's every three to four weeks," said Mark Reedy Allergy patient.

 The treatment that Stricker uses on Reedy is delivered in a form of a shot and Reedy needs them every month to get by.

"I can be able to function all the time and not be down," Reedy said.

Dr. Stricker believes the only way, especially for children, to not let allergies get you down is by administering the treatment by using shots.

"Immunotherapy or vaccination therapy to help treat children's allergies that can't be avoided." Dr. Wes Stricker Allergist.

But there is another doctor right down the road who uses her own form of medicine and it's kid friendly.

"98% of my patients that are children , those families will opt for sublingual droplets," said Dr. Laurie Fowler.

"Its less traumatic, its just under the tongue," said parent Serna Jones White. "She just stands there for thirty seconds, its not a big deal."

Researchers studied the oral droplets using two double-blind placebo controlled studies. One using the oral treatment and one using the shots.

Researchers began to see the difference.

The placebo group who thought they were being injected with the shot treatment improved by 4% while the actual group improved by 72% a whopping difference. The oral placebo group improved by 47% and the actual oral group improved by 58%. Not a huge difference.

But Dr. Fowler still believes the oral treatment works and uses it on many of her patients.

"A child cannot make their nose dry up. That is something they can't control," Fowler said.

So if allergies sometimes have you spinning out of control, weigh your options and ask your doctor why they use the methods they do.

The American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology or ACAAI says oral sublingual therapy may eventually be approved.

Right now, the ACAAI says it's not an accepted therapy.

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