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Health Care Providers: Allergists/Immunologists

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What Is Allergy/Immunology?

Allergy (AL-ur-jee) and immunology (im-yuh-NAHL-uh-jee) is the medical specialty that diagnoses and treats allergies, immune system problems, and asthma.

What Is an Allergist?

An allergist (AL-ur-jist)/immunologist (im-yuh-NAHL-uh-jist) is a doctor who diagnoses and treats asthma, allergies, or immune system conditions.

Why Would Someone Need One?

Allergy/immunology doctors diagnose and treat problems such as:

They do medical tests and procedures such as:

  • checking to see how well the immune system is working
  • skin testing and blood testing for allergies
  • intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG-antibodies given through an IV)
  • chest X-rays
  • blood tests
  • spirometry

What Is Their Training?

Allergist/immunologist training usually includes:

  • 4 years of pre-medical education at a college or university
  • 4 years of medical school — a medical degree (MD) or doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO) degree
  • 3–4 years of training in a pediatric, internal medicine, or med-peds (combined pediatric and internal medicine) residency program
  • 2 years in an allergy-immunology fellowship program. A “fellow” is a doctor who had more specialty training after completing medical school and a residency.

Good to Know

Allergists/immunologists often work closely with:

Date reviewed: September 2022