At Silverstein Institute we are very passionate about our allergy program. We believe we have developed a uniquely comprehensive program to unravel the causes and then treat to resolution the multiple factors that bring on Allergy symptoms. We have been actively practicing Allergy since the 1970’s, and are constantly evolving our protocol to provide what we consider to be the best approaches for resolving your allergy problems.
People do not have to suffer – there are alternatives. If the symptoms are infrequent, then antihistamines or nasal sprays may be all that is needed. But if problems are persistent or severe, then a course of immunotherapy and food evaluation makes sense.
We start with a broad series of prick tests that screen for many dust, mold, pollen, mites, and animal irritants. Any positives are then further worked up by intradermal testing. Follow up in 24 and 48 hours is essential in making sure that your individualized serum mix is safe and effective.
We have a very comprehensive protocol for evaluating and treating food allergies, which are often a mitigating factor, if not the cause, and if left untreated fail to resolve the patient’s problems.
Therapy is instituted with weekly shots given in our office or, when necessary, can be given by your local healthcare provider. While symptoms may start to be relieved from the beginning, we expect to see results within 4 months or therapy may be discontinued. Once the shots provide complete relief, we can reduce the frequency to every two or three weeks and ultimately reduce injections to a once monthly maintenance dose.
Our success speaks for itself. We have resolved the symptoms of many patients suffering with:
Many of the staff members have been passionately involved with allergy for 12-30 years. We believe we offer a uniquely comprehensive and quality approach to resolving your problems. We appreciate our patients and work individually with them on an ongoing basis to make sure that therapy is maximized.
Q. Will my insurance company pay for the allergy testing?
A. We will verify your insurance benefits specifically for the allergy testing and you will be notified if there are any parts of the testing that is not covered or if you have a large unpaid deductible. Even though we verify the benefits, the responsibility for the cost still remains with the patient and all patients must sign an Advanced Beneficiary Notice assuming responsibility if the insurance does not pay.
Q. How much does the testing cost?
A. The rates for the allergy testing are specifically determined by the insurance carriers. We have rates for patients who do not have insurance. These rates can be discussed with the allergy department prior to testing.
Q. Are you testing me for food?
A. Yes, we test for foods. Food testing is done via a simple blood draw which is sent to a specialty laboratory for the most optimal results. This laboratory participates with most insurance. We will set and appointment for a consult after we receive your results to help you with avoidance and substitutions.
Q. How long before I begin to feel better?
A. Every patient is different. Some patients state that they feel better from the very first shot. For most patients however, improvement can be noticed within the first three months.
Q. How long do I have to be on shots?
A. The average length of time for weekly shots is 3-5 years. This depends on how many allergens you are being treated for, how well you tolerate the injections and how consistent you are about coming into the office weekly for the shots. Once maintenance is reached then you can reduce the frequency of your shots to every two weeks then every month. We recommend continuing on a monthly maintenance shot for prolonged wellness.
Q. Do I have to come for shots every week?
A. The schedule for shots is weekly until the maintenance dose is reached, then the schedule changes to bi-weekly and then monthly. Some patients who are geographically challenged can be taught to take shots at home. We encourage our patients to get the shots in the office for safety reasons.
Q. What if I miss a week?
A. Each weekly shot is increased in dosage as tolerated by the patient. If one shot is missed, the dose stays the same and is not increased. If more than one week is missed, the dose is reduced.
Q. What happens when I return north for the summer?
A. We have many winter residents who take shots in our office during the months that they are in Florida. We will be happy to coordinate with the home physicians office so that the patient can continue their injections without interruption. For the most part, the things that we test for are the same things that you would be exposed to up north. We will be happy to discuss this further with you.
Q. I was on shots before without any results. Why do you think that the shots will work this time?
A. Our program incorporates a threefold treatment plan. We give allergy shots for the environment, we assess for foods and we counsel for practical lifestyle changes such as dust reduction methods. When all three things are done, we find that the patient benefits more and as a result, becomes less allergic.