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Xolair (Omalizumab) Helps Patients with Persistent Chronic Idiopathic Urticaria

Many patients with chronic idiopathic urticaria (CIU) experience symptoms despite high doses of H1-antihistamines, H2-antihistamines and/or leukotriene receptor antagonists. This placebo-controlled trial evaluated Omalizumab or safety ad add-on treatment of patients with CIU. It included 336 patients with CIU. They were randomly assigned to treatment group receiving six 300mg sc injections at 4 week intervals vs placebo. There was significant improvement of pruritis in the treatment group. The improvement continued through the 24 week treatment period but it was not sustained after discontinuation. Looks like omalizumab may be a new option for patients with this challenging condition.

Kaplan A, Ledford D, Ashby M, et al: Omalizumab in patients with symptomatic chronic idiopathic/spontaneous urticaria despite standard combination therapy. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2013; 132:101-109.

Saraleen Benouni, MD Dr. Benouni specializes in the treatment of asthma, allergies, atopic dermatitis, and immune disorders for both adults and children. She has presented and published research at national allergy meetings and has authored papers on drug allergies and skin conditions. She is a member of the American College and American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, and the Los Angeles Society of Allergy, Asthma, and Clinical Immunology.

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