If allergic asthma symptoms are constantly disrupting your daily life, even though you use control medications like inhalers, it may be time to add on a biologic.
Biologics are medications you take as a shot or IV infusion. They’re monoclonal antibodies, which are human-made blood proteins. Scientists make them using cells from living organisms. Biologics bind to parts of your immune system that are responsible for asthmatic inflammation and turn it down.
“Biologics suppress this specific targeted immune response so that the asthma can be controlled without needing a broader immunosuppressant like prednisone, which comes with many side effects,” says Purvi Parikh, MD, allergist and immunologist with Allergy & Asthma Network.
Biologics are meant to be an add-on to other types of allergic asthma treatments, not a standalone medication.
These may include:
Immunotherapy. This therapy involves seeing an allergist for allergy shots. The shots contain very small doses of the allergen that triggers a reaction in you. Over time, your body may become less reactive to the allergen.
Allergy medications. Although they aren’t treatments for asthma itself, oral and nasal antihistamines and decongestants, as well as corticosteroid and cromolyn nasal sprays, can help ease the allergic reaction causing your asthma symptoms.