Background: Symptoms of allergic rhinitis have a considerable impact on the quality of life of the sufferer. Sneezing, runny nose, blocked nose and headache are some of the most common symptoms of allergic rhinitis, which affects work, home and social life for many patients. Sublingual immunotherapy has shown to induce a protective immune response and provide sustained symptom prevention for allergic patients.
Aims of the trial: The overall aims were to investigate the efficacy and safety of a sublingual grass allergen tablet (Grazax® 75 000 SQ-T; ALK-Abelló A/S, Denmark). Reported here are the effects of Grazax on individual eye and nasal symptoms.
Methods: The trial was a double-blind placebo-controlled trial including 634 participants with significant rhinoconjunctivitis because of grass pollen. Participants were randomized 1 : 1 to Grazax (a fast dissolving, once daily immunotherapy tablet for home administration) or placebo and received treatment for at least 16 weeks prior to and continuing during the grass pollen season of 2005. Four nasal symptoms and two eye symptoms were scored on a scale from 0 (no symptoms) to 3 (severe symptoms) every day during the entire grass pollen season. Nasal symptoms included runny nose, blocked nose, sneezing and itchy nose; eye symptoms included gritty feeling/red/itchy eyes and watery eyes.
Results: Consistent and highly significant reductions in individual eye and nasal symptoms (from 22 to 44%) were observed following treatment with Grazax as compared with placebo (P < 0.0001).
Conclusions: Grazax has effects on multiple allergic symptoms, including nasal blockage, and is an effective treatment of rhinoconjunctivitis, thereby reducing the need for topical anti-allergic drugs.