Cluster IT vs. Traditional IT: What’s the Difference?
Posted on April 26, 2017

Allergy shots, also known as Immunotherapy (IT) is the most natural form of allergy therapy and the best way to treat allergies. After having skin testing done, we will know the allergens to which you are allergic and can make vials for injection under your skin.

During the first phase of injections, the “buildup phase”, you will progressively receive increasing doses of these allergens which will become more concentrated. Once you get to the most concentrated solution, you will then be in the maintenance phase and you do not need to come in as often for shots.

At AASC, we have two options for the buildup phase: traditional and cluster.

Traditional Immunotherapy

In traditional IT, you will come into the office once a week and receive a set of injections depending on your sensitivity.

There is always a risk of reaction with any kind of shots, but the risk is lower with traditional vs. cluster IT.

Cluster Immunotherapy

Cluster immunotherapy is a fast track for the buildup phase. You will come in for four sessions over the course of 2 weeks and get one shot every 5-15 minutes for about two hours. You will then receive a weekly shot for the  next 12 weeks, after which you will then be in the maintenance phase.  Therefore the total build up for cluster IT is only 14 weeks compared to 48 weekly shots with traditional IT.

There is more of a risk of reaction in cluster IT, since you are getting many shots in a short period of time. We will give you a pre-medication procedure to follow, which we will discuss with you before you begin. Cluster IT is not offered to patients under 10 or those with severe asthma.

Below is the standard procedure for allergy shots after you have completed the four clusters.

  • One shot every two weeks for three months.
  • One shot every three weeks for three months.
  • One shot every month after that.

The decision for doing cluster versus traditional therapy is up to you, but please be sure to ask us any questions you have to help you make the best choice for you.

Call our office today if you have questions on starting traditional or cluster IT.

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