Those suffering from allergies must overcome the daily challenges they cause. Whether patients know the specific allergens to avoid or not, one of the most important questions they seek an answer to is who should they turn to for help.
You might ask yourself, "Why would I see an ear, nose, and throat doctor to get my allergies treated? " In fact, allergies are a very common disorder that ENT's treat every day. Patients come to our office routinely complaining about problems such as nasal congestion, post nasal drainage, recurrent sinusitis, and cough. All of these symptoms may likely have allergies as the root cause. Addressing allergies is central in relieving these symptoms.
The History of Allergists and ENTs
It will surprise many people to know that ENT's (or otolaryngologists) have been studying and treating allergies for over 100 years. More surprising is that otolaryngologists were some of the key researchers to develop our current testing techniques and immunotherapy treatment. In the early 1900s, some of the initial doctors studying allergic disease, such as Dr. Joseph Goodale and Dr. R. Cook, were otolaryngologists. In the 1920s, Dr. French Hansel, an otolaryngologist in St. Louis, was one of the first physicians to show the effectiveness of the sublingual immunotherapy technique. This easy, safe, and effective immunotherapy technique is a cornerstone of treatment at Virginia, Ear, Nose, & Throat.
Medical Allergist or ENT Allergist
Over the years, otolaryngologists have gravitated towards treating allergic disease that affects the nasal passages, sinuses, and airway. A smaller percentage treat generalized allergy symptoms or food allergy. At Virginia Ear, Nose, & Throat, we test and treat anyone over 8 who has allergic rhinitis. For our very young patients with allergic symptoms, or for our patients with food allergies or skin allergies, we tend to get assistance from our medical allergy colleagues or dermatologists in treating these disorders.
One stop shopping at Virginia Ear, Nose, & Throat
At Virginia, Ear, Nose, & Throat, our doctors can handle any problem of the head and neck. Our goal is to find the ultimate cause of your symptoms and treat it—not just manage symptoms. Allergic disease is a big cause of nasal, sinus, and respiratory problems and we will treat it with medication and sometimes immunotherapy to improve patients’ symptoms. Sometimes getting nasal congestion or recurrent sinusitis under control requires starting allergy shots or allergen drops under the tongue and sometimes it requires surgery. We can provide the expert medical and surgical treatment of these conditions to get your quality of life back. Let’s face it, we own the nose!
So the question you should ask yourself is, “Why wouldn’t I see an ENT for my allergies?”