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The clinical dilemma of “silent desensitization” in aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease

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Aspirin desensitization is a treatment option for patients with aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease (AERD). Some patients with an excellent history of aspirin or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) reactions have negative aspirin challenges/desensitization. This study discusses the clinical entity of silent desensitization in AERD and the dilemma that this presents to the practicing allergist/immunologist. We discuss a series of patients with a strong history of NSAID reactions who initially underwent a negative challenge/silent desensitization. These patients were subsequently proven to have AERD after a second positive aspirin challenge. Silent desensitization is an uncommon but important outcome to recognize in AERD. Clinicians performing aspirin desensitization should understand that this can occur and consider a second confirmatory aspirin challenge in some patients.

Keywords: Aspirin; aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease; asthma; desensitization; nasal polyps; oral challenge; silent desensitization

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Division of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, Scripps Clinic, La Jolla California, USA

Publication date: July 1, 2013

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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