An allergist (also called an immunologist) is a physician who is specially trained to diagnose, treat, and manage allergies, asthma and other immunologic disorders, including primary immunodeficiency disorders.

What is a Board Certified Allergist?

An allergist, who has been certified by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology, has met the following requirements. He

  • Graduated from an accredited medical school or school of osteopathic medicine
  • Passed  national medical board exams
  • Completed training in either Internal Medicine or Pediatrics
  • Passed of board exams in either Internal Medicine or Pediatrics, completion of at least two years of subspecialty training in allergy and immunology at an accredited program
  • Passed of the exam administered by the American Board of Allergy and Immunology, which is a conjoint board exam sponsored by the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Pediatrics and a member of the American Board of Medical Specialties.

A Board-certified allergist has met the highest standards of training and testing.

What Diseases Do Allergists Treat?

Allergists treat a wide variety of diseases. The following is a representative, but not all-inclusive, list:

  • Allergic rhinitis (hayfever)
  • Sinusitis (sinus infections)
  • Asthma
  • Urticaria and angioedema (hives and swelling)
  • Drug allergy
  • Food allergy
  • Anaphylaxis (allergic shock)
  • Atopic dermatitis (eczema)
  • Immunodeficiency diseases, such as common variable immunodeficiency (CVI).

Can an Allergist Treat Other Medical Conditions?

No. While some allergists are Board-certified either in Internal Medicine or in Pediatrics, your relationship with your primary care physician (or family doctoro) is essential for good medical care and that your primary care physician is the most qualified individual to treat your other medical problems. Your allergist can work as partners with your primary care physician to give you the best possible care.

Can an Allergist Treat Both Children and Adults?

Yes. Whereas your allergist received primary training either in Internal Medicine or Pediatrics, the subspecialty Allergy and Immunology training is with both adult and pediatric age groups. Therefore, your allergist is entirely qualified to see all age groups for allergic, respiratory, and immunologic diseases. Be sure to confirm with your allergist.

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