Desensitisation (specific immunotherapy, hyposensitisation) is still the only causal treatment that results for certain allergies in a complete relief of symptoms. The therapy requires a comprehensive assessment through the specialist.

Therapy and treatment

Desensitisation (specific immunotherapy, hyposensitisation) is a therapy used for IgE-mediated Type I allergies. It is carried out in cases of allergy symptoms connected with pollen allergy, house dust mite allergy, possibly in animal allergies and mould allergy.

In the case of insect venom allergies (bee and wasp stings), desensitisation therapy is often life-saving and therefore must absolutely be recommended.

The relevant allergens are injected under the skin in ascending doses (SCIT – subcutaneous immunotherapy) or placed under the tongue as tablets or drops (SLIT – sublingual immunotherapy). The aim is to build up immunological protection that will prevent further allergic reactions. The body then becomes "accustomed to the allergen".

A desensitisation therapy is successful if the symptoms are greatly reduced or – the best-case scenario – they no longer appear at all.

Editors: aha! Swiss Allergy Centre in co-operation with the Scientific Advisory Board. For prevalence figures, see source references.

aha! Swiss Allergy Centre helps

  • aha!shop: other booklets and factsheets provides detailed information and are available in German, French, Italian
  • aha!kinderlager for children with allergies aged between 8 and 12 years (in German or French)
  • aha!jugendcamp for youngsters aged between 13 and 16 years (in German)
  • Other education and courses on the subject "Neurodermatitis", "Anaphylaxis" (in German)
  • We value your opinion. Or would you like to exchange experiences with other sufferers? Find out more in german under "Advice and exchange"  (in German)

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