Allergy Shots (Immunotherapy)

Allergy shots (immunotherapy) are a method of treating allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma in which small doses of substances (allergens) are injected under the skin. Allergy shots may reduce or eliminate sensitivity to the allergen that causes an allergic reaction.

A doctor will do skin or blood tests to find out what the person is allergic to. Allergy shots are available for some allergies to:

  • Pollen (ragweed, grasses, trees).
  • House dust mites and cockroaches.
  • Animal dander (dogs and cats).
  • Mold (fungus).
  • Insect venom (wasps, bees, yellow jackets, hornets, fire ants).

Last Revised: June 17, 2013

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Rohit K Katial, MD - Allergy and Immunology

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The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.