Desensitization

(redirected from desensitize)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Idioms, Wikipedia.
Related to desensitize: desensitisation

desensitization

[dē‚sen·sə·tə′zā·shən]
(communications)
Reduction in receiver sensitivity due to the presence of a high-level off-channel signal overloading the radio-frequency amplifier or mixer stages, or causing automatic gain control action.
(immunology)
Loss or reduction of sensitivity to infection or an allergen accomplished by means of frequent, small doses of the antigen. Also known as hyposensitization.
(psychology)
Relief from or removal of a mental complex.

Desensitization

 

(biology), reduction or elimination of increased sensitivity (sensitization) of the organism to repeated introduction of a foreign substance (allergen), most often protein in nature. Upon introduction into the organism of a foreign protein, a specific substance, an antibody, is formed, whose interaction with the protein when it is repeatedly introduced may produce serum sickness or other forms of allergic reactions. Sulfur preparations, aloe, antihistamines, and other antihistamine-antiserotonins possess desensitizing properties.

Desensitization as a method of treating allergic diseases is used, in particular, to prevent serum anaphylaxis from repeated injections of serum preparations (for example, antidiphtheria serum), in accordance with the method proposed in 1907 by the Russian scientist A. M. Bezredka. The method consists in injecting small concentrations of the preparation (the antigen) that produced the sensitization; as a result, a state of antianaphylaxis arises, that is, desensitization. Owing to this, the next injection of the reacting dose of the allergen does not produce anaphylaxis. Allergic diseases (for instance, bronchial asthma and allergic rhinitis) are treated by specific desensitization (if the allergen causing the disease is known), nonspecific desensitization, and complex desensitization. Specific desensitization is especially effective in treating nonbacterial allergies, primarily in pollinoses (hay fever), but it is also successfully used in bacterial sensitization (for example, in treating chronic tonsillitis, tonsillogenic intoxication, and rheumatism). Specific desensitization is performed by intradermal injection of the specific allergen, beginning with a 1:1,000,000 dilution of one cutaneous dose of the specific allergen, and gradually increasing its concentration to 1:10 of one cutaneous dose (the final dilution). If the specific antigen is not found, nonspecific desensitization treatment with antihistamines (for instance, dimedrol, Diprazin, and suprastin), and hormonal preparations are used, (corticosteroid hormones, such as hydrocortisone and prednisolone) as well as physiotherapy and balneotherapy. Complex desensitization, which combines specific and nonspecific desensitizing preparations, is often used.

REFERENCES

Allergiia i allergicheskie zabolevaniia, vols. 1–2. Edited by E. Rajka. Budapest, 1966. (Translated from German.)
Rost, G. A., D. G. R. Findeisen, and I. Niemand-Andersen. Praktikum der allergischen Krankheiten. Leipzig, 1958. Pages 116–31, 196–241.

A. KH. KANCHURIN, P. P. SAKHAROV, and IU. A. FADEEV


Desensitization

 

in photography, a reduction in the light sensitivity of photographic materials under the influence of the substances adsorbed on the halide crystals of the emulsion. Most of the sensitizer dyes and a number of other substances exhibit a desensitizing effect in the range of specific sensitivity for silver halide (λ = 500 millimicrons and lower). Many antifogging agents also act as desensitizers, specifically potassium bromide and some special desensitizers (such as green pinakriptol), which selectively lower the additional sensitivity in the long-wave region. Their inclusion in the developer makes it feasible to begin to develop the sensitized materials in darkness and to end the developing under relatively strong lighting. This sequence affords visual monitoring of the process.

References in periodicals archive ?
Whereas NSAIDs work almost instantaneously, they could also potentially desensitize the body to their mode of action.
Will it desensitize people to war as battles appear on screens like part of a giant ``video game,'' or personalize the profound tragedy of war in a way that is transformational?
Many parents don't realize that young children believe frightening movies are real, having the power to turn nighttime into frightime," said Butterworth, who developed a treatment strategy to desensitize anxious children traumatized by frightening films.
While conventional bee-allergy therapies include 100 to 150 shots over a five-year period, AlleCure's vaccine, whose extract is derived from bee venom, will desensitize patients to an allergy with four shots over a period of about six months.
RTX is a small molecule that can be delivered to the bladder to desensitize specific nerves called afferent neurons.
Either from ignorance or insensitivity, these movies, television shows, magazines and newspapers communicate messages that desensitize the public toward animal suffering and are deserving of a `Foe-Paw,' our end-of-year `dishonor' roll.
He moved his firms AlleCare, which develops vaccines to desensitize allergies, and Advanced Bionics from Sylmar and Chatsworth to Valencia.