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The allergists and asthma specialists at The Asthma Center perform Drug Desensitization and Special Challenges to test allergies to specific medications. We have performed desensitizations or dry challenges on over 200 different drugs and our physicians are the Delaware Valley’s most experienced experts with these types of drug procedures.
In order to desensitize an individual, The Asthma Center physicians can take the medication needed for treatment and dilute the medication to dilutions as low as 1:1,000,000 of the normal treatment concentration. The desensitization process is done by very slowly administering the medication at these extremely low doses which usually does not cause a reaction. Following each stage of incremental, increasing dose of administration, the individual’s vital signs and general status are reviewed. If all is well then the next dose is administered. The desensitization process often takes a whole day to complete in order to get the patient to a tolerated therapeutic dosage.
The Asthma Center is well equipped to handle reactions to this process which may occasionally occur. There are some medications where skin testing to the drug or its components is highly accurate and predictive of current sensitivity or not. This is true of penicillin. With most drugs, the sensitivity of skin testing is less reliable and a challenge to the drug using two sequential doses can prove tolerance or the more lengthy desensitization is done when there is a high probability the individual may still be reactive to a particular drug.
For more information on testing for drug reactions, challenges and desensitizations, visit Get Relief: Drug