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What is allergy?

I am an allergy specialist with over 40 years of practice experience and I have been asked this question at least once a day. Allergy (ies) are a family of illnesses caused by exposure to substances that are in concentrations tolerated by most people. For example exposure to pollens can cause nasal or lung symptoms in allergic people but have no effect on most people.

Allergy is derived from the Greek “Allergos” for strange, unusual, or unexpected reactions.

Hence the name AllergosRx for the nutraceutical compound on this website,

A number of natural agents which have been shown to affect the allergic reaction are combined in this one therapy.

The allergic reaction starts with the binding of the allergic antibody IgE with an allergen which causes the release of body chemicals that trigger the allergic responses. For example, the reaction can cause excessive sneezing, nasal congestion, nasal itching and runny nose, In the lungs there can be wheezing, cough, excess mucus, and shortness of breath.

Treatments are directed to slow down the release of the chemicals from the activated cell. There are also therapies that act on the target cells to block and decrease the target cells responses.

Allergies are inherited, but the expression of allergic symptoms is modified by environmental factors which are not allergy producing, but affect how the immune response genes work.

Not all allergic reactions are caused by IgE allergy antibodies, but for the most common allergic diseases, allergy nasal disease, asthma, and hives, it is the chief cause.

For your personal questions please email me at

I will provide an answer or advice as best I can. Over the next few weeks, I will be posting other information as allergy season starts to creep up.

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