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Cognitive, Social, and Economic Costs of Allergic Rhinitis

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Abstract:

Allergic rhinitis is a highly prevalent, chronic condition. In addition to physical discomfort, rhinitis symptoms have been associated with detrimental effects on the psychological and social aspects of patients' lives. In allergy-specific questionnaires, subjects with allergic rhinitis consistently report lower quality of life than nonallergic controls. Untreated patients are embarrassed and frustrated by their allergy symptoms. Atopic individuals consistently exhibit significant declines in cognitive processing, psychomotor speed, verbal learning, and memory during allergy season. The discomfort, cognitive impairment, and absenteeism associated with allergic rhinitis exact a significant economic toll on U.S. businesses through decreased productivity. When combined with direct medical expenditures, the economic burden of allergic rhinitis is considerable. The effect of treatment on the economics of allergic rhinitis is highly variable: relatively inexpensive medications (lower direct costs) have central nervous system side effects that can cause somnolence and impair learning, memory, and performance (higher indirect costs). Health outcomes data on the effects of allergic rhinitis and its treatments can help establish, monitor, and improve standards of care; as well as inform priority setting, direct resource allocation, and eliminate unnecessary practices.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2500/108854100778248953

Publication date: January 1, 2000

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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