Subspecialty Careers: Allergy and Immunology
Allergy is derived from the Greek word allo, meaning "other or different" and ergon, meaning, "work." In this sense, allergy is something that "works differently" from normal. Immunity is derived from the Latin word immunitas, meaning "an exemption from taxes or public or military service." In the late 19th century, when knowledge of toxins and infection evolved, the meaning was extended to persons "exempt from" or protected against the onslaught of foreign substances and were said to be "immune."
Allergy and immunology involves the management of disorders related to hypersensitivity or altered reactivity caused by the release of immunologic mediators or by activation of inflammatory mechanisms.
Important procedural skills include spirometry and spirometric response to irritant challenges and bronchodilators, rhinoscopy, drug desensitization protocols, immediate skin tests for IgE-related reactions, patch tests, and prick and intradermal skin tests.
Allergy and Immunology fellowship training requires two years of accredited training beyond general internal medicine residency in an accredited Allergy and Immunology fellowship training program.
Dual certification can be obtained in the specialties of Rheumatology and Allergy and Immunology after a minimum of three years of training following the general internal medicine residency program. At least one year must be devoted to full- time clinical Rheumatology training in an accredited program. At least 18 months must be devoted to full-time allergy/immunology training in an accredited Allergy and Immunology fellowship-training program. Weekly attendance for 18 consecutive months in an ambulatory care program supervised by Rheumatology faculty must be included in the program.
The American Board of Allergy and Immunology offers certification in this specialty.
For the 2012-2013 academic year, there were 73 Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)-accredited training programs in Allergy and Immunology with 293 trainees.
Major Professional Societies
- Allergy and Asthma Proceedings
- Clinical and Experimental Allergy
- Clinical and Experimental Immunology
- Clinical Immunology
- Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Students: Join ACP for Free
Benefits of Membership for Students: ACP's free Medical Student Membership includes benefits designed especially to meet students' needs.
Join Now: Sign-up today and begin enjoying the benefits of ACP Medical Student Membership.
Find a Residency
Search ACP's Internal Medicine Residency Database for information on all internal medicine residency programs in the U.S. and Canada. (ACP Members only)
Have questions about the new ABIM MOC Program?
One Click to Confidence - Free to members
ACP Smart Medicine is a new, online clinical decision support tool specifically for internal medicine. Get rapid point-of-care access to evidence-based clinical recommendations and guidelines. Plus, users can easily earn CME credit. Learn more