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Blog Archive

Update on nose sprays Apr 23rd, 2019

The most popular type of preventative nose sprays for allergy contains small amounts of steroids. Examples include Flonase, Nasacort and Nasonex. For the past several years, Flonase and Nasacort have been available without a prescription (OTC). A couple years ago, Rhinocort also went OTC. One advantage of Rhinocort is its...

Yes, food allergy can be treated Jan 31st, 2019

  It is estimated that 4 percent of American children and 1 percent of American adults have a true food allergy (not just a food intolerance). In 2015, the LEAP study was published, proving that feeding peanuts to infants at high risk for developing food allergy significantly decreased the risk...

Allergies in older adults Jan 1st, 2019

In April 2017, the AARP Bulletin wrote about allergies, and since it’s an AARP publication, it focused on adults age 50 and over. Before the 1990s (like when Drs. Engler and Malick were training), it was taught that allergy was an ailment of the young and usually got better as...

Update on dog allergy Dec 1st, 2018

A few years ago, I wrote about whether there really was such a thing as a hypoallergenic dog. The answer was “sort of.” Breeds claimed to be hypoallergenic, like a Bichon or Poodle, produce just as much dog allergen per square inch of body-surface area as Golden Retrievers. But Goldens...

Air filters Nov 1st, 2018

“What kind of air filter should I buy for my allergy?” The answer is “it depends on what you’re allergic to.” If you are allergic to cat dander or grass pollen, we recommend investing in an advanced filter. These allergens are small; thus, they are lighter than air and stay...

Two quick pathways to allergy relief Oct 1st, 2018

Allergy shots are unique in that they make you less allergic to the pollen, dust mites, mold and/or animal dander you’re allergic to. They do this by helping your body to switch from an “allergic” response, to more of a “tolerance” response. In essence, your body no longer tries to...

Goodbye, black box warning Sep 1st, 2018

Many patients with persistent asthma use an inhaler every day called a maintenance inhaler. The medications in these inhalers are either inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) or a combination of ICS and long-acting beta agonists or LABAs. Those of us who keep a magnifying glass handy may have read the fine print...

Alpha gal – an exceptional allergy Aug 1st, 2018

It is uncommon for individuals to develop a food allergy in the adult years of life, especially if that allergy is to red meat or pork. As we know, however, the world of medicine is full of exceptions. Alpha gal sounds like a strong female leader, but it’s actually one...

Five-syllable words Jul 1st, 2018

Doctors often seem to have their own language, speaking in scientific medical terms that often confuse those trying to understand them. Even when a doctor says, “I don’t know,” it can come out as, “The precise mechanism has yet to be fully elucidated.” Seriously, I heard a speaker use those...

The itch that rashes meets its match Jun 1st, 2018

Atopic dermatitis, or eczema, is a miserable condition. Itching brings on the scratch, which spreads the rash, and a vicious cycle ensues. Many rashes itch, but with eczema, the rash does not appear until after you scratch it. Thus, instead of being a “rash that itches,” it is known as...

Why allergy shots don’t work Apr 1st, 2018

Claritin, Zyrtec, Xyzal, Allegra, Nasonex, Flonase, Singulair. All treat allergy symptoms, but none actually makes you less allergic. You stop the medicine, and it soon stops working. Allergy shots are unique in that if taken at the right dose for at least three years, they can continue to provide beneficial...

Don't Let Asthma Control You Mar 1st, 2018

Don’t let asthma control you Susana came to us as a new patient last year for another opinion on her asthma. She was still experiencing asthma attacks in spite of using her maintenance inhalers daily. Overall, though, she thought her asthma was “pretty well controlled.” Asthma is a chronic condition...

Dust-mite tablets Feb 1st, 2018

Dust mites are the small creatures that make many people allergic to dust. They love heat and humidity, so they feel right at home in the Houston area. Since dust mites are such a common cause of allergy in this area, it’s exciting news that a new form of allergen...