Hay fever vaccination works after treatment discontinued

New data presented at the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology (BSACI) annual meeting demonstrated that Grazax® sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablets continued to work for a year after the initial treatment.

The Grazax GT08 study was an international randomised, parallel-group, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicentre study. Patients were randomised to receive either three years of Grazax or placebo, followed by a two year treatment-free follow up period. Throughout the study all patients had free access to symptomatic medications such as antihistamines and nasal sprays.

Sneezing, watery eyes and a blocked nose are amongst the most common symptoms reported by patients with severe hay fever. All of these symptoms improved during the three years of continued treatment. Importantly, one year following teh end of the treatment, these symptoms remained significantly reduced 31% (sneezing), 60% (watery eyes) and 51% (blocked nose) compared to the patients who had received placebo tablets. Moreover, the reduction in the need for relief medicationslastd through the three years of treatment and duringthe hay fever season in the year after teh end of the treatment.

Professor Stephen R. Durham, principal investigator, National Heart and Lung Institute, Imperial College, London and President of the BSACI said:
'Severe hay fever has a huge impact on a person's ability to function, impairing their everyday quality of life for months during the grass pollen season. Sleep disturbance is a major issue for many sufferers often leading to day-time tiredness; increased absence from school and work as well as significantly impacting on children's exams results during the summer months. Allergy services in the UK are woefully inadequate, with little action despite four Government reports calling for improved services. Hay fever in particular is a significantly under-treated and under-recognised disease yet it affects 1 in 4 of the UK adult population. Grazax offers a significant benefit to sufferers of moderate to severe 'hay fever'.

Durham S, et al. Sustained, disease-modifying effect of grass allergen tablet immunotherapy 1 year after completion of treatment. XXVIII Congress of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology; poster # 333


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First Published in July 2009

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