St. Joseph's Allergy and Immunology Program offers comprehensive allergy services aimed at improving the quality of life of people with allergies through assessment, diagnosis, treatment, research and teaching. Many people with untreated allergic symptoms aren't aware of how much better they can feel once their symptoms are properly diagnosed and managed. At the outpatient Allergy and Immunology Clinic, a personalized treatment plan is developed for patients, which includes measures to avoid or eliminate triggers, recommendations for medications, and education to help individuals take an active role in managing their disease.
Care provided by the expert team at St. Joseph's can make the difference between suffering with an allergic disease and feeling better.
A referral from a family doctor or specialist is required for patients to be seen at the outpatient clinic of the Allergy and Immunology Program at St. Joseph’s Hospital.
The clinic provides assessment and treatment for a wide range of conditions: allergic rhinitis; allergic conjunctivitis' drug allergies; food allergies, insect allergies; and more. Among procedures performed are:
- Skin tests for inhalant allergens
- Allergen immunotherapy for allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, asthma
- Skin tests and blood tests for food allergies
- Skin tests for antibiotics and other drug allergies
- Desensitization procedure for drug allergies
- Oral immunotheraphy for certain food allergies such as peanut
- Patch testing for cosmetics, fragrances and skin care products
What patients can expect
Your first visit will take about one hour, during which you will spend some time with both the nurse and the doctor. Please allow for at least that amount of time.
The Allergy and Immunology Clinic at St. Joseph’s Hospital is a teaching facility affiliated with Western University. During your visit, you may also be seen by a medical resident Having trainees in the clinic contributes to the comprehensive assessment of patients and is an important aspect of medical training in London to produce next generation of specialists. Please let us know when you check in if you have any questions about this.
Allergy skin tests
Many allergy problems can be diagnosed with skin prick tests. This involves a very tiny quantity of allergy material being pressed into the skin with a tiny plastic pick. These are much less uncomfortable than the injections that were used previously.
If possible, please stop antihistamine medications (Claritin, Reactine, etc.) for 3 days before your visit. You do not need to stop anything else, such as nose sprays. Call us if you’re not sure. Do not stop any of your asthma medicines.
While allergy injections are not for everyone, they are very useful in treating some kinds of allergy problems. You may wish to discuss this treatment option with the doctor.
If you are currently taking allergy injections, please bring your serum and the dosing schedule with you to your outpatient appointment.
Food Allergy Clinic
St. Joseph's has established a Food Allergy Clinic where patients with any kind of food allergy (referral required) can be definitively diagnosed using the latest, evidence-based approaches, including food challenges where the person is exposed to the food and monitored. For certain food allergies, such as peanut, the clinic offers oral immunotherapy under very strict and careful supervision of allergy specialists.