Did you know that more than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies? Combined, allergies are the sixth leading cause of chronic illness and cost the United States government $18 billion per year. At Kirill Zhadovich, MD, SC in Niles, Illinois, internal medicine physician Dr. Zhadovich and family physician Alex Kostiv, MD, regularly work with patients to diagnose and treat allergies. To make your appointment, call the office or click the online booking tool today.
Allergies are a type of chronic disease. They occur if your immune system reacts to a foreign substance such as pollen, pet dander, or food.
Everyone’s immune system naturally produces antibodies. However, if you have allergies, your body makes antibodies that identify particular allergens as harmful, even if they aren’t.
If you have allergies and you come into contact with a particular allergen, you may suffer an allergic reaction, which can inflame your skin, sinuses, or digestive system.
Allergies range in severity; for some people they’re a minor irritation, for others, they can cause anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening emergency.
The symptoms of allergies depend on the allergen involved. However, common signs include:
Severe allergic reactions might cause anaphylaxis. Symptoms of anaphylaxis include a loss of consciousness, lightheadedness, nausea, and vomiting. If you or a loved one experiences these symptoms, call 911 or visit your nearest emergency room right away.
Allergies affect people of all ages and ethnicities. However, certain factors increase your risk, including:
You’re also more likely to develop allergies with a compromised immune system.
To determine whether you have an allergy, your Kirill Zhadovich, MD, SC provider performs a physical exam, reviews your medical history, and asks about the symptoms you’re experiencing.
If your doctor suspects you have a food allergy, they might also ask you to keep a detailed journal of the foods you eat and the symptoms you experience.
If your doctor is unable to pinpoint the source of your discomfort, the team might recommend a skin pinprick test or a Specific IgE (sIgE) blood test.
During a skin pinprick test, your doctor pricks your skin and exposes you to a small number of proteins found in potential allergens. If you’re allergic to one or more substances, you’ll develop a raised welt.
During a Specific IgE test, your doctor draws a sample of your blood. Your doctor sends your sample to a lab that measures the amount of allergy-causing antibodies in your bloodstream.
Treatment for allergies depends on the source and severity of your symptoms. For mild or moderate allergies, the team typically recommends allergen avoidance and prescription medications.
By steering clear of your allergy triggers and taking medicine as prescribed, you’re far less likely to experience an allergic reaction.
For more serious allergies, your Kirill Zhadovich, MD, SC provider might recommend immunotherapy or emergency epinephrine. Emergency epinephrine is a prescription medication used to prevent anaphylactic shock until you can get emergency treatment.
Don’t let allergies interfere with your quality of life. Make an appointment at Kirill Zhadovich, MD, SC by calling the office or clicking the online booking tool today.