how to become an allergist immunologist

What does a Allergist Immunologist do?

Disclaimer: The information on our website is provided for general information purposes only. We make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information contained on our website for any purpose. Any reliance on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk and we are not liable for any damages or losses arising out of or resulting from your reliance on any information contained on our website.

An allergist is a health care professional who specializes in allergic diseases that may impact children and adults. They diagnose what patients are allergic to and help treat their symptoms. Some allergic reactions can be mild while some can be very severe so they also educate their patients on the procedures to take in case of an emergency due to an allergic reaction. Watch a video to learn what an allergist immunologist does.

How to Become an Allergist and Immunologist

how to become an allergist immunologist

If you are interested in becoming an allergist and immunologist, you would first earn a bachelor’s degree. This is a step you must take before you are admitted into a college program to study medicine. It helpful to choose a degree program in the sciences to gain leverage over other applicants applying for medical school. Look for degree programs that offer science courses such as physics, chemistry, and biological science.

Admission to a medical program is competitive so it’s also useful to volunteer or gain some sort of paid clinical experience that you can highlight in your application. To apply, you’ll also need to take an exam called the MCAT – which stands for Medical College Admission Test. Passing MCAT is a prerequisite to gaining admission into medical schools and you’ll need to find time to study for that exam. Then, you will complete four years of medical school and pass your medical licensing exam. This exam will test your ability to apply your clinical knowledge to the practice of medicine.

After all this, you’ll complete your residency training in pediatrics, internal medicine, or a combination of the two. This exposes you to various clinical settings while you learn from more experienced doctors. This is important as allergists must work with patients of all ages and must be thoroughly knowledgable in a wide range of allergic and immunologic diseases. After your residency program, you would complete a 24 month fellowship program that will train you to provide medical care to adults and children. For more information about the career path of an Allergist and Immunologist, visit The American Academy of of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology (AAAI) website (link opens in a new tab).

Job Description of an Allergist and Immunologist

An allergist and immunologist would see patients experiencing symptoms and diagnose whether those symptoms are due to diseases of the immune system or allergic reactions to food, medications, and/or insects. They would then treat those conditions and educate their patients on their treatment plan to include the risks and benefits of their treatment. According to, common diseases they treat include respiratory tract diseases such as allergic rhinitis, sinusitis, asthma, hypersensitivity pneumonitis and occupational lung diseases and well as other immune deficiency syndromes.

A career in allergy immunology has the advantage of working in various settings, like hospitals, clinics, universities, laboratories, and managerial and supervisory positions. All of these settings have the additional benefit of working indoors. Allergist-immunologists also have the opportunity to open a business with their own clientele and dictate their own hours of operation. Allergist-immunologists work with people of all ages and cultures and help them solve their allergy issues. They teach others how to help themselves and the challenges of mentally solving problems. Allergist-immunologist is on the cutting edge of science and works with supportive consultant networks to help people with mild to severe issues.

Article Citations

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Physicians and Surgeons.

National Center for O*NET Development. 29-1069.01. O*NET OnLine.

The career video is in the public domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.

Scroll to Top