Shots, allergy: Known medically as allergy desensitization or allergy immunotherapy, the injections are designed to stimulate the immune system with gradually increasing doses of the substances to which a person is allergic, the aim being to modify or stop the allergy "war" (by reducing its effect on the mast cells). This form of the strength of the IgE and its treatment is very effective for allergies to pollen, mites, cats, and especially stinging insects (e.g., bees, hornets, yellowjackets, wasps, velvet ants, fire ants). Allergy immunotherapy usually takes 6 months to a year to become effective and injections are usually required for 3-5 years.
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Last Editorial Review: 7/1/2016