Grass pollen allergies cause problems for numerous people throughout the United States every day; one of those people is Hannah Porter from Morganton. Now, a new treatment may offer relief for sufferers like Porter.
Her mom, Amy Porter, describes her reactions, “Her face is just red or she acts like she’s not feeling very well from being outside and she’ll itch and sneeze.”
Hannah has been on various forms of medication, which is one of the two traditional treatments, the other being allergy shots.
That can cause problems, according to Greer Laboratories President and CEO John Roby, “As you might expect, people have needle phobia. People have issues with time because you have to actually travel to the office and as such, there’s a fair amount of dropouts of injections and people who just flat out refuse to do it.”
Now, Roby’s company has launched an alternative, Oralair, which was approved by the FDA in April.
“Oralair is under the tongue, once daily,” said Roby. “You take it prior to the season, through the season and then there’s a drug holiday where you don’t have to take it and you pick it back up.”
Dr. Patrice Kirchoff of Allergy Partners in Morganton commented, “It’s more like the shots. What it will do is induce a tolerance so that when you inhale the grass pollen, your body no longer reacts.”
People using the tablet must begin taking it approximately 16-weeks before the grass pollen season starts, which means most suffers will begin using it next year.
“With the approval of the product so late,” said Roby, “we’re in the process of educating and detailing our physicians, filling the United States pipeline up with starter kits, because patients go home with a starter kit, and preparing for the real season, which will be the 2015 season.”
Amy Porter says she intends to put Hannah on Oralair next year.
“That way she won’t have to take so many different kinds of medication and this will take the place of that,” she said.