Allergy and Immunology
Allergies happen when your body’s immune system has an abnormal reaction to substances you breathe, touch, or eat. Allergic reactions can get in the way of your life and even become life-threatening.
At Allegheny Health Network (AHN), relief is within reach. We combine the latest treatments with decades of experience to deliver exceptional allergy care
Allergy care at AHN: Why choose us?
We offer relief from the stress and discomfort that allergies can cause. Our physicians successfully treat people for whom other treatments have not been successful. These capabilities are one of the many reasons doctors from across western Pennsylvania trust us to care for challenging allergy problems.
Other highlights of our program include:
- Innovative food allergy treatments: We were one of the first programs in the Pittsburgh area offering oral immunotherapy for food allergies. This treatment protects children and adults against life-threatening allergies, including peanut allergies. Read more about food allergies.
- Accurate diagnosis: The experience we’ve gained from treating many patients helps us accurately diagnose and manage rare problems, such as primary immune deficiency disease. This disease includes common variable immunodeficiency (CVID), hypogammaglobulinemia, IgA deficiency, and specific antibody deficiency. We detect subtle signs of these conditions to make an accurate diagnosis and help you avoid complications.
- Team approach: Our allergists regularly treat patients with complex rhinosinusitis and asthma, often alongside AHN pulmonologists and ear, nose, and throat specialists. We also coordinate testing and treatments for people with allergies that come from regular exposure to their sensitivities. The teamwork of our physicians ensures that treatments are tailored to all of your needs. Read more about pulmonology.
- Personalized care: We explain your diagnosis and how treatments can help you feel better. You receive a care plan that also describes what to do if you experience symptom flare-ups. Our approach gives you better chances for successful treatment.
Allergies we treat
We diagnose and treat a broad range of allergic conditions including:
Allergies happen when a person’s immune system becomes sensitive to particles in the air. Common symptoms include:
- Stuffy nose
- Runny nose
- Itchy, watery eyes
Testing helps identify which substances you are allergic to (allergy triggers). We use this information to determine the best treatments.
Most people feel better with medication and by taking steps to avoid triggers. You may also receive allergy immunotherapy injections to reduce your sensitivities and symptoms.
Hives are patches of itchy, red skin that often signal an allergic reaction. With chronic hives, symptoms occur for no reason and can last six weeks or more.
We help you get relief with medications. And we teach you how to manage flare-ups so you can avoid visiting the emergency department.
Chronic sinusitis and nasal polyps
Chronic sinusitis happens when your sinuses become swollen. If the condition lasts 12 weeks or more, abnormal growths (polyps) may be to blame. We help many people get relief with medications that we tailor to help maximize your quality of life.
Complex drug allergies
Sometimes the drugs you take for other medical conditions can cause serious allergic reactions. We are one of few programs in western Pennsylvania that offers testing and challenge for a broad range of potential drug allergies. This testing helps us identify substitutes that are safe for you to take even if you have multiple drug allergies.
This complex food allergy has symptoms that mirror other conditions, such as reflux. We work together with your digestive disease doctor (gastroenterologist) to find out what’s causing your symptoms.
We use sophisticated testing methods to help assess potential triggers for eosinophilic esophagitis diagnosis. This information helps you receive appropriate care and relief that lasts. Read more about eosinophilic esophagitis.
Insect sting anaphylaxis
When insect stings happen, the animal injects venom into your skin. The venom causes life-threatening allergic reactions in some people, including difficulty breathing (anaphylaxis). These reactions often occur with bites from flying insects, such as bees.
If you’ve experienced a severe reaction to a flying insect sting, we offer testing to confirm whether you are allergic. If you test positive for insect allergies, you may receive venom immunotherapy to help you build up a tolerance. After treatment, if you get stung, you are less likely to experience a reaction. And if you do, symptoms are often less severe.