Subcutaneous Immunotherapy and Pharmacotherapy in Seasonal Allergic Rhinitis: A Comparison based on Meta-Analyses
ABSTRACT Allergen-specific subcutaneous immunotherapy (SCIT) of seasonal allergic rhinitis (SAR) is usually considered a "second-line," slow-acting, disease-modifying treatment.
We sought to test whether SCIT is as effective as antisymptomatic treatment in the control of symptoms in patients with SAR in the first year of treatment.
We reviewed meta-analyses with 5 or more randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials of SCIT or antisymptomatic treatment in patients with SAR. We then selected trials measuring the total nasal symptom score (TNSS), the total symptom score (TSS), or both during the first pollen season after treatment initiation. Efficacy was determined as the percentage reduction in TSSs and TNSSs obtained with active treatment compared with placebo (relative clinical impact [RCI]) and the standardized mean difference (SMD) of treatment verses placebo (effect size [ES]).
The weighted mean RCI of SCIT on TNSSs (-34.7% ± 6.8%) was higher than those of mometasone (-31.7% ± 16.7%, P < .00001) and montelukast (-6.3% ± 3.0%, P < .00001). The weighted mean RCI of SCIT on TSSs (-32.9% ± 12.7%) was higher than that of desloratadine (-12.0% ± 5.1%, P < .00001). The overall ES of SCIT in terms of TNSSs (SMD, -0.94; 95% CI, -1.45 to -0.43) was similar to that of mometasone (SMD, -0.47; 95% CI, -0.63 to -0.32; P > .05) and higher than that of montelukast (SMD, -0.24; 95% CI, -0.33 to -0.16; P < .05). The overall ES of SCIT in terms of TSSs (SMD, -0.86; 95% CI, -1.17 to -0.55) was comparable with that of desloratadine (SMD, -1.00; 95% CI, -1.68 to -0.32; P > .05).
Our data provide indirect but consistent evidence that SCIT is at least as potent as pharmacotherapy in controlling the symptoms of SAR as early as the first season of treatment.
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ABSTRACT: Allergen immunotherapy (AIT) is a guidelines-approved, disease-modifying treatment option for respiratory allergies, including allergic rhinitis (AR) induced by pollen. The various AIT regimens employed to date in pollen-induced AR can be classified as continuous (i.e. year-round) or discontinuous (i.e. pre-seasonal alone, co-seasonal alone or pre- and co-seasonal). Pre-and co-seasonal regimens are typically used for sublingual allergen immunotherapy (SLIT) and have economic and compliance advantages over perennial (year-round) regimens. However, these advantages must not come at the expensive of poor efficacy or safety. The results of recent double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trials show that pre- and co-seasonal SLIT is safe and effective in patients with AR induced by grass pollen (treated with a tablet formulation) or by birch pollen (treated with a liquid formulation). Progress in SLIT has been made in defining the optimal dose of major allergen, the administration frequency (daily), the duration of pre-seasonal treatment (four months) and the number of treatment seasons (at least three). Post-marketing, "real-life" trials of pre- and co-seasonal birch or grass pollen SLIT regimens have confirmed the efficacy and safety observed in the clinical trials. In the treatment of pollen-induced AR, pre- and co-seasonal SLIT regimens appear to be at least as effective and safe as perennial SLIT regimens, and are associated with lower costs and good compliance. Good compliance may mean that pre- and co-seasonal SLIT regimens are inherently more effective and safer than perennial SLIT regimens. When considering the pre- and co-seasonal discontinuous regimen in particular, a 300 IR five-grass-pollen formulation is the only SLIT tablet with a clinical development programme having provided evidence of short-term, sustained and post-treatment efficacy.12/2015; 5(1). DOI:10.1186/s13601-015-0061-z
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Allergic rhinitis is a common allergic disease with increasing prevalence in Western Societies. Medical therapy is first line treatment, and is aimed at reducing symptoms of immunoglobulin E (IgE)-mediated inflammation of the nasal passages. In patients with disease refractory to medical therapy, subcutaneous immunotherapy is an option. The aim of this study is to update a recent Cochrane review with available level 1 evidence for seasonal and perennial allergic rhinitis. METHODS: A systematic review of the literature was performed from 2006 to 2011 and compared with data from a 2007 Cochrane review on immunotherapy for seasonal allergic rhinitis. We included all studies of level 1 evidence. All forms of single extract immunotherapy were considered. Studies with primary asthma related end-points were excluded. Primary end-points were instruments of clinical efficacy (ie, symptom-medication scores) and adverse events. RESULTS: We retrieved 12 level 1 studies for review. In total, 1512 patients were randomized into treatment groups, alternative study groups (alternative duration of therapy or sublingual immunotherapy [SLIT]), or placebo. Efficacy was evaluated based on reported symptom and/or medication score, validated quality of life instruments, immunological assays, challenge testing, and adverse events. CONCLUSION: Subcutaneous immunotherapy improves symptom and/or medication scores and validated quality of life measures. In addition, associated changes in surrogate markers of immunologic protection are observed. Subcutaneous immunotherapy is safe when administered to carefully selected patients and in settings capable of responding to systemic reactions. Subcutaneous immunotherapy is recommended for patients with seasonal or perennial allergic rhinitis not responsive to conservative medical therapy, and whose symptoms significantly affect quality of life.International Forum of Allergy and Rhinology 07/2013; 3(7). DOI:10.1002/alr.21141 · 2.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Objective Allergic rhinitis (AR) is one of the most common diseases affecting adults. It is the most common chronic disease in children in the United States today and the fifth most common chronic disease in the United States overall. AR is estimated to affect nearly 1 in every 6 Americans and generates $2 to $5 billion in direct health expenditures annually. It can impair quality of life and, through loss of work and school attendance, is responsible for as much as $2 to $4 billion in lost productivity annually. Not surprisingly, myriad diagnostic tests and treatments are used in managing this disorder, yet there is considerable variation in their use. This clinical practice guideline was undertaken to optimize the care of patients with AR by addressing quality improvement opportunities through an evaluation of the available evidence and an assessment of the harm-benefit balance of various diagnostic and management options.Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery 02/2015; 152(1 Suppl):S1-S43. DOI:10.1177/0194599814561600 · 1.72 Impact Factor