Proactive vs Reactive Treatment

for Bee and Wasp Allergies?

What is VIT?

Venom Immunotherapy (or VIT) is a series of injections, often referred to as allergy shots, that help the immune system build a tolerance to insect venom proteins until the body has enough immunity to tolerate a bee or wasp sting.

VIT can diagnose and treat allergies to: honey bee, wasp, white-faced hornet, yellow hornet, and yellow jacket.

Why take a Proactive Approach with VIT?

Epinephrine is the first line of defense for those at risk of anaphylaxis, but it’s a reactive response to an emergency that could be proactively prevented by VIT.

Studies show that patients often forget to carry their auto-injectors. It’s been reported that less than 30% of allergy patients carry their epinephrine at all times, putting them at risk for an anaphylactic reaction.12

Studies also show that more than 55% of insect sting patients cannot demonstrate proper administration of their epinephrine auto-injector device. 12

VIT can mitigate the risks associated with patient non-compliance of epinephrine auto-injectors. In fact, VIT has been found to be up to 98% effective in preventing systemic allergic reactions to honey bee, wasp and hornet stings. 7

“As a physician you’re trying to help people, and this can be such a helpful intervention…”

What can I do as a Health Care Provider?

Recent data suggests that patients who have sought medical emergency assistance due to insect sting anaphylaxis are not getting information on VIT as a treatment option, or even a referral to an allergy specialist for follow up care.13

If you want to help BeeAware Allergy educate patients about VIT as a treatment option, you can download our patient education materials below. Complimentary printed materials are also available via the Printed Materials Request form.

You can also refer appropriate patients to an allergy specialist. The physician locator on this site provides a comprehensive list of VIT specialists across the U.S.

Want to learn more about about VIT? Contact us today!

Printed Materials Request

Talk to a provider about VIT today

1 Ludman & Boyle. Stinging insect allergy: current perspectives on venom immunotherapy. Journal of Asthma and Allergy. 2015:8 Pages 75-86.

2 Jubilant HollisterStier Allergy. Instructions and Dosage Schedule for Allergenic Extracts: Hymenoptera Venom Products

3 Mylan. EpiPen/EpiPen Jr Prescribing Information. Retrieved 2018: https://www.epipen.com/hcp/-/media/files/epipen/prescribing%20information.pdf

4 Posner & Camargo. Update on the usage and safety of epinephrine auto-injectors, 2017. Drug, Healthcare and Patient Safety. 2017.

5 Boyle. Epinephrine Auto Injector Use One Year after Training: A Randomized Controlled Comparison of Two Different Devices. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, Volume 135, Number 2, Abstracts AB209.

6 Mylan. About EpiPen and Generic Frequently Asked Questions. Retrieved 2018: https://www.epipen.com/about-epipen-and-generic/faq

7 Golden. Insect Sting Anaphylaxis. Immunology and Allergy Clinics of North America, Volume 27, Issue 2, May 2007, Pages 261-272.

8 T. T. Song, M. Worm, P. Lieberman. Anaphylaxis treatment: current barriers to adrenaline auto‐injector use. Allergy, Volume 69, 2014, Pages 983-991.

9Throughout this site the term “bees and wasps” is used as a generalized description of stinging insects. The complete list of VIT insects include: honey bee, wasp, white-faced hornet, yellow hornet, and yellow jacket.

10 David K. Golden, M. J. (2011). Stinging insect hypersensitivity: A practice parameter update 2011. J. Allergy Clin Immunol, 852-854.e23.

11 U.S. Census Bureau. (2017, July 1). Quick Facts United States. Retrieved from United States Census Bureau: https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/PST045217#PST045217

12 Goldberg, A., Confino-Cohen, R. Insect sting-inflicted systemic reactions: attitudes of patients with insect venom allergy regarding after-sting behavior and proper administration of epinephrine. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 106 (6): 1184-1189, 2000.

13 Current state of follow-up care for patients with Hymenoptera venom anaphylaxis in southwest Germany Major impact of early information. Allergo J Int. 2018; 27(1): 4–14. Published online 2018 Jan 16. doi: 10.1007/s40629-017-0046-7.