Dr. Julie Kuriakose, Allergist

Flatiron Faces: Dr. Julie Kuriakose, Co-Founder of Hudson Allergy

The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership is pleased to introduce Dr. Julie Kuriakose, co-founder of Hudson Allergy. Hudson Allery provides allergy care at 208 Fifth Avenue, between 25th and 26th Streets. Dr. Kuriakose is a native of Belle Mead, NJ and holds a B.S. in Public Health from Rutgers University as well as an M.D. from the New Jersey Medical School, University of Medicine & Dentistry.

1. Briefly describe your roles as co-founder of Hudson Allergy, faculty member at New York Presbyterian/Cornell Weill, and a Clinical Instructor in Medicine at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons/New York Presbyterian.

As co-founder of Hudson Allergy, my mission is to provide expert medical care to my patients and to set the standard for a modern private medical practice. First and foremost, patient care and education are my priorities. I also focus my efforts on improving the customer experience. At Hudson Allergy, we offer the highest level of care with same day appointments, comprehensive services, applied digital tools, and electronic medical records. The goal is for our doctors to spend more time with our patients, who ultimately spend less time waiting.

At Columbia, I spend my time lecturing fellows, residents, and medical students and providing hands-on teaching in the allergy clinic. It's a wonderful and rewarding experience to be able to teach at the institution that trained me.

2. Spring is almost here and with that, seasonal allergies. What's some of the best advice you offer to your patients?

First, see an allergist and identify what you're specifically allergic to. So many patients know they have allergies but have no idea what allergens are causing the reaction.

Once you know what you're allergic to, take steps to prevent exposure. For example: keep windows closed to avoid letting airborne pollen and mold into your home; take your shoes off at the door, change your clothes, and wash your hands and face after spending time outdoors; shower before you go to sleep. Pollen is very sticky and can stick to your hair and body. Also, consider investing in a HEPA air purifier for your bedroom, clean/change your air conditioning filters, track pollen/mold counts, and start your medications before the season starts, don’t wait until your symptoms are severe. Prevention is key to winning against allergies.

3. You're also a Huffington Post blogger who has written about food allergies. What are your key recommendations to diners eating out?

*Understand your food allergy–get tested and confirm your diagnosis. Your allergist should clearly explain your allergy and help you put an allergy action plan in place. This may include carrying emergency medication.

*If possible, check out the menu in advance and recognize if there are any red flag dishes you need to avoid. Call ahead and let management know a member of your party has food allergies; this is New York, and most restaurants are happy to accommodate.

*Don't be afraid to repeat yourself when it comes to your food allergies.  Discuss your allergy with your waiter and, if possible, speak with the chef.

*When your meal is placed in front of you, confirm this is your dish and that it was prepared to your specifications. If there is any doubt, speak to the management about having it remade.

4. Why did you pursue the specialties of allergy, immunology, and internal medicine as a profession?

Early in my career, I did research in asthma and epigenetic regulation. I'm fascinated with how environmental exposures can trigger disease, not just asthma and seasonal allergies/hay fever, but also allergic skin conditions and food allergies, especially as the number of people with allergies grows.

5. As a Flatiron District business owner, what do you love most about working in the area, and what leisure activities do you like to do here?

I love that there are so many fitness studios and gyms in the area. It's so easy to attend a class after work.

6.  Your practice receives positive patient reviews. What distinguishes your office from others, and what are the reasons behind your business success?

We're focused on the customer experience. Our office is modern and inviting. We offer same day appointments without a long wait. Patients can book their appointment online, and they can communicate with their doctor directly through our patient portal without having to pick up the phone. Most importantly, our doctors are accessible and take the time to develop a relationship with each individual patient.

7. When you grab a bite to eat in the neighborhood, where do you like to go? What's your favorite dish?

I can't choose! Bo's Kitchen & Bar Room for the watermelon cocktails, and Tappo for the thin crust pizza.

8. What do you consider a "must-see” or “must-do" in the community?

Madison Square Park has some of the best views of the most charming buildings in the city.

9. What's your favorite building or architectural element in the area and why?

The Flatiron Building and Clock Tower. They're simply iconic.

10. Choose three words to describe the Flatiron District.

Vibrant. Dynamic. Historic.