The Allergy Program at Glacier Ear, Nose and Throat, has been providing comprehensive specialty care throughout the Flathead Valley and surrounding areas since 1993.
Our Allergy program is under the direction of Dr. David Healy Jr. M.D., who is Fellowship trained in Allergy. Our goal is to provide medical care using evidence-based medicine, education, and patient-centered care to give people control of their health. Rest assured that you are receiving the finest quality medical care from professionals who have only your best interests in mind. Our efficient, knowledgeable, and kind staff will help you feel relaxed as we work together to improve your health.
Services We Provide
Allergy Skin Testing
In order to begin immunotherapy (allergy shot therapy), the patient must be tested to determine their specific sensitivities of allergies. There are many methods used to test allergies. The Allergy Program at Glacier Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic uses Skin Endpoint Titration to determine allergies. This method is advantageous over other methods, as it identifies and quantifies (demonstrates the severity of) allergies. Once our physicians know how severe a patient’s allergies are, the patient can be treated with allergy shots in a safe, progressive, and tolerable manner.
Allergy Blood Testing
Sometimes individual circumstances may indicate that a blood test (sometimes known as RAST testing) may be used to determine a patient’s allergies. Blood test help us establish allergies when Skin Endpoint Titration is not indicated. Your physician will determine which test is appropriate for you during your consultation.
The preferred allergy treatment is allergen avoidance and medication treatment. If these treatments do not successfully control allergy symptoms, the Otolaryngic Allergist can alter the body’s overactive response by carefully challenging the patient’s immune system. This is done through regular injections of the actual allergens to which the patient is sensitive. This treatment can be given after allergy testing has revealed what the allergy is to and the severity of the allergy. Over time it may be possible to actually alter a person’s excessive response to these environmental allergens and both improve
symptoms as well as decrease the need for medications and allergen avoidance for many years.
On-Site Mixing of Allergenic Extracts
During your testing session, your level of sensitivity to positive antigens will be established. The same extract is used for treatment. This is an advantage, as it allows the clinician to calculate a tailored dose of each antigen for each individual patient, ensuring a safe starting dose as well as effective therapy. The goal of immunotherapy is to escalate the antigen dose to the point of an individual’s highest tolerated dose. This dose should also control symptoms without causing unacceptable local or systemic reactions.
The Allergy Staff at Glacier Ear, Nose & Throat assists the physicians of the clinic by performing allergy testing, mixing allergenic extracts for immunotherapy, and administering allergy shots. They also serve as a resource to our patients by providing counseling services regarding avoidance of allergens, including both inhalants and foods.
Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT)
Sublingual immunotherapy is an alternative to injection immunotherapy. This treatment can be given after allergy testing has revealed what it is that a patient is allergic to. Once allergies are determined, an allergen extract is prepared in drop form. A specified number of drops are applied under the tongue and held there for one to two minutes. The drops are then swallowed. Sublingual dosing is once a day. This form of immunotherapy is often not covered by insurance plans, but is a nice alternative when injection immunotherapy is not practical.