What is an Allergy?
An allergy is an overreaction of the immune system to an antigen (a substance such as a pollen, mold, food, chemical or insect bite) which is usually not harmful to most people.
Some symptoms of allergies can include the following:
- Itchy, runny nose or eyes
- Repeated sinus infections
- A feeling of fullness in the ears
- Sneezing, coughing, wheezing and asthma
- A closing up of the airway
- Rashes such as hives and eczema
- Joint aches
- Gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting
- Changes in behavior, mood and hand writing
Allergy & Low Dose Antigen Therapy (LDA)
At the Kotsanis Institute we use Low Dose Antigen treatment (LDA). LDA is administered in the forearm by intradermal injection. LDA is given once every two to three months for the first six to eight treatments. Most patients receive a total of 11-15 treatments over three years. The effect of LDA can be almost immediate; however, the full benefit of LDA may be slow to appear. Generally, patients can notice some significant effect with the first or second injection. The response rate usually improves with subsequent injections.
What is LDA?
Low Dose Antigen Therapy (LDA) is a way of treating allergies and chemical and food intolerances that uses homeopathic doses of common allergens (substances that make you react). Also included in this injection is a small dose of an enzyme called ß glucuronidase. This enzyme is a potentiator for contents of the injection. A potentiator is a substance that makes the basic contents of the shot stronger.
How does LDA work?
The treatment activates the T-lymphocytes (immune system controlling white blood cells) which shut off the undesirable allergic response. The T-lymphocytes have a half-life of 12 to 16 weeks and form life-long memory cells that eventually give you the long term relief you need. Patients who have gone through the treatment report that they need fewer medications, get fewer infections and have more tolerance to foods, pollens and chemicals. Most patients can eat all foods (allergenic or not) about 12 months after they start the treatment without reactions.
How is LDA administered? It is given in an intradermal (into the skin) injection on the forearm.
How often is LDA administered?
LDA is given about once every two months in the first year, once every three months the second year, and once every six months in the third year, and thereafter if needed. Depending on how closely the patient follows the recommendations, she/he may or may not need an annual booster. This type of schedule makes following the treatment plan easy.
What is the usual response?
Typically, children respond faster than adults. In some cases we see immediate response with the first injection, while in other cases the response may take 4 to 5 doses. When the response wears off, you must wait until the next dose to continue relief. There is sometimes a decreased response to the 4th or 5th dose, but then improvement increases again. The localized reaction at the location of the injection can vary from no reaction to a reaction that is red, itchy, and the size of a half dollar or even larger. The size of the reaction has no relationship to what type of response you will have.
Do I have to do anything to prepare for LDA; and are there any dietary restrictions?
Preparing for LDA consists of being on an antifungal protocol for at least the five days before your shot. It is very important that the rotating anti-fungal protocol is followed before and between LDA treatments. LDA works best when yeast and Candida are suppressed. On the day before, the day of and the day after the LDA shot you must also stay away from your allergic foods, household chemicals, allergy medicines, and also preferably any household pets. Also on those three days you must eat only cooked foods (not raw – because they contain enzymes which may interfere with treatment). During those three days you must also refrain from taking your normal nutritional supplements. You should, however keep taking medications for serious conditions such as insulin, steroids, hypertension and heart medications. If you have questions on a specific medication please call us. Avoid over the counter allergy meds, antihistamines, decongestants and nasal sprays one week before and three weeks after LDA. Avoid alcohol, fatiguing exercise and extreme sun or heat.
Is LDA safe and effective?
An Italian study conducted in 2006 which used ß glucuronidase in allergy therapy in children, concluded that it was safe and effective. One thing that helps insure the safety factor is the use of homeopathic (very low) dosages. LDA and other forms of enzyme potentiated treatment have been used safely in the US and United Kingdom for over 30 years. There are numerous studies cited at the end of this section that reflect the scientific experience and evidence supporting this treatment.
What other conditions has LDA been used to treat?
LDA can be used to treat all kinds of allergies (pollen, dust, animal dander, mold, etc.) as well as food intolerances. Additional studies cited at the end of this discussion also found this type of treatment effective for asthma, mite allergy, and food induced hyperactivity. But doctors have treated many other immune-related conditions with LDA. A list of these appears below.
- Autistic Spectrum Disorders such as autism, ADD, ADHD, Turret’s, Asperger’s, dyslexia, etc.
- Chest infections – recurring
- Chronic anal itching
- Chronic cough
- Chronic fatigue
- Contact dermatitis
- Crohn’s disease
- Ear infections – chronic
- Face and sinus pain
- Gut fermentation and bloating
- Hyperactivity (ADD, ADHD, Autism, etc.)
- Interstitial cystitis
- Irritable bowel
- Itchy watery eyes
- Meniere’s disease
- Mental confusion
- Migraines and severe headaches
- Nasal polyps
- Post nasal drip
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Runny, stuffy nose
- Sinusitis – chronic
- Swelling of the face, lips or tongue (angioedema)
LDA is not covered and may not be filed with insurance.