Background: Kashmir valley has been witnessing an increase in allergy related disorders with aeroallergens being the most prevalent causative agent. Allergen-specific immunotherapy (allergen-SIT) has been a potentially curative treatment modality in allergic diseases that acts by inducing the peripheral T cell tolerance and promoting the formation of regulatory T-cells. Our study was designed to analyse the treatment response of patients with allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma in Kashmir Valley by using allergen-SIT approach.
Method: A total of 754 patients suffering from Allergic Rhinitis and Allergic Asthma were recruited in this study. Skin Prick test (SPT) was performed with panel of aeroallergens. Allergen-SIT was given as a therapeutic modality to 218 SPT positive patients. The symptom score and medication requirement was analysed during the time course of allergen-SIT.
Results: Allergen-SIT was effective in reducing severe symptoms in 87% patients of SPT-positive allergic rhinitis and 76% SPT-positive allergic asthma patients. Moreover, allergen-SIT showed reduction in medication of 73% SPT-positive allergic rhinitis and 69% SPT-positive allergic asthma patients during their maintenance therapy, usually after period of one year.
Conclusion: Our study proves the efficacy and beneficial effects of allergen-SIT in patients with allergic rhinitis and allergic asthma in Kashmir Valley. Our study shows that allergen-SIT is not only an effective therapy for reducing the allergic symptoms but also acts specifically to restore normal immunity against allergens in the long-term course of the disease.