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Desensitisation consists of administering, under controlled conditions, increasing doses of the allergen the patient is sensitised to, to make them tolerant of the medication or food that causes them problems.
This usually induces temporary tolerance, which means the patient can receive treatments they were originally allergic to, instead of having to take less effective alternatives. In the case of foods, patients may become completely tolerant to them or gain some protection against accidental ingestion of the allergen.
Patients undergo desensitisation treatment under the care of an allergist, at the hospital.
There is a risk of allergic reactions during the procedure.