Immunodeficiency Specialist

Travis Sifers, MD -  - Allergy & Immunology

The Center for Allergy & Immunology

Travis Sifers, MD

Allergy & Immunology located in Kansas City, MO & Lee's Summit, MO

Primary immunodeficiency occurs when part of your immune system is missing or malfunctioning. At The Center for Allergy & Immunology, with offices in Kansas City and Lee’s Summit, Missouri, primary immunodeficiency specialist Travis Sifers, MD, provides the highest level of customized care possible, including in-office infusion suites. Dr. Sifers trained under a world-renowned immunology specialist and has extensive experience to draw on. Call the office nearest you or book your appointment online.

Immunodeficiency Q&A

What is immunodeficiency?

Immunodeficiency is a group of hundreds of diseases affecting your immune system. The two main types of immunodeficiency are primary and secondary.

Primary immunodeficiency

Primary immunodeficiency generally has a genetic cause and is often present at birth. There are more than 300 types of primary immunodeficiency. 

Primary immunodeficiency may involve B cells, T cells, combination B and T cells, or complement deficiencies. Or, it may involve defective phagocytes or have an unknown origin. 

Secondary immunodeficiency

Secondary immunodeficiency occurs as a complication of outside influences, such as chemotherapy, radiation, or severe burns.

Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is a well-known example of a secondary immunodeficiency disorder.

With all forms of immunodeficiency, your immune system is unable to effectively identify and fight off foreign substances. This greatly increases your risk of infections and serious health complications. 

What are the symptoms of primary immunodeficiency?

Primary immunodeficiency can cause chronic infections and illnesses, such as:

  • Sinus infections
  • Ear infections
  • Skin infections
  • Bronchitis
  • Pneumonia
  • Meningitis
  • Anemia or other blood disorders
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms, such as abdominal cramping, nausea, and diarrhea
  • Internal inflammation and infections

It can be more difficult to treat infections if you have primary immunodeficiency. Infections can last much longer and you may need multiple courses of antibiotics to eradicate them. 

How is primary immunodeficiency diagnosed?

Dr. Sifers performs a comprehensive physical exam, reviews your medical history and your family’s medical history, and performs lab testing such as bloodwork to determine whether you have primary immunodeficiency. 

How is primary immunodeficiency treated?

Dr. Sifers trained with world-renowned immunology specialist Charlotte Cunningham-Rundles, MD, which helped him to establish superior skills in the treatment of primary immunodeficiency. 

Lifestyle changes, including proper hygiene, avoiding contact with sick people, a healthy diet, and stress management can potentially help minimize your risk of new infections. 

Your treatment may include antibiotics to fight the infections, medications to manage your symptoms, and, where necessary, treatments to boost immune system function. 

The Center for Allergy & Immunology has on-site infusion suites for intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) and other immune-modulating therapies that can help your immune system fight infections better. 

With the support of The Center for Allergy & Immunology, you can enjoy a healthy life in spite of your primary immunodeficiency. Book your appointment by calling the office or clicking the online scheduling link.