Q. When should I see an allergist? If your nose gets stuffy and your eyes start to itch every spring, you will benefit from seeing an allergist/immunologist. However, those aren't the only symptoms that might bring you to our practice. Our allergy-immunology physicians are trained to diagnose and treat conditions that affect the immune system; they treat more than allergies. They can help you care for a wide range of conditions that involve your immune system, including asthma, chronic sinusitis, hives, and primary immune deficiency.

Q. What should I take with me to my appointment?
A: When coming to your first appointment, bring the patient’s medical history, family medical history, a list of current or recent medications, any lab results or diagnostic tests taken recently, and any photos or records of symptoms, such as rashes.

Q. What kind of examinations can I expect?
A: Depending on the circumstances, you can expect either a full physical exam, or a more narrow exam limited to the problem area (eyes, ears, nose, chest, etc.). A detailed medical history can give us needed insight. For respiratory problems, spirometry and measurement of FeNO, skin tests and/or allergy blood tests, radiographs (x-rays) and other techniques may also be employed. It is important to note that you will not be skin tested at your first visit. Testing is ordered on an individualized basis, depending on the patient's age, symptoms, and current medications, including other factors.

Q. Do all allergy patients need shots?
A: A common and often helpful method of controlling allergic reactions is allergy desensitization via allergy injection therapy, since allergen avoidance and traditional medication to control symptoms is frequently insufficient.

Q. How old must my child be to visit your office?
A: We see patients of all ages--from a few weeks old to senior citizens.  Most allergic reactions in children are caused by food and household allergens like pet dander and dust. Allergy skin testing can be performed on a child of any age, but it can be difficult to interpret the results in infants less than 6 months old.