Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Oral drops can give kids needle-free relief from asthma, allergies

Allergy shots are commonly used to treat children with severe environmental allergies and asthma, but under-the-tongue drops may offer yet another beneficial — and stick-free — option for pediatric allergy sufferers, according to a Johns Hopkins Children's Center review of existing scientific evidence.

The new research comes on the heels of another recent Hopkins study, which showed that oral drops provide a safe and effective alternative for adult allergy sufferers.

The new review, appearing May 6 in the journal Pediatrics, is an analysis of 34 previously published clinical trials and suggests that both drops and injections work well in alleviating the bothersome symptoms of allergic rhinitis and asthma, the research team says. In addition to being better tolerated by needle-averse children, the oral treatment can be given at home, sparing the family a visit to the doctor's office.

"Our findings suggest the needle-free approach is a reasonable way to provide much-needed relief to millions of children who suffer from asthma or seasonal allergies," says lead author Julia Kim, M.D., M.P.H., a pediatric research fellow at Johns Hopkins Children's Center.

Allergy shots, which contain tiny amounts of proteins found in environmental allergens such as dust mites and pollen, are a standard treatment for severe seasonal allergies in children who do not get relief from medication. However, under-the-tongue drops are not approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and are only offered off label by some physicians. The needle-free approach is widely available in Europe, where patients are commonly treated with sublingual pills and drops, the researchers say.

The new findings, Kim notes, are encouraging enough to prompt a second look at oral drops as a treatment option.

The Hopkins researchers first looked at 13 studies that involved 920 children and compared the efficacy of allergy injections to either placebo or standard allergy medication. Overall, the researchers found that injections provide better symptom relief than placebo and standard medication for children with asthma or allergic rhinitis. The team next analyzed 18 trials involving 1,580 children treated with oral-drop therapy, placebo or standard medication for asthma and rhinitis or either condition alone. In this group, the researchers also found that oral drops provided superior relief of asthma symptoms, compared with patients who got the placebo and/or standard drugs. Oral drops also provided better symptom relief than placebo and standard medication in children with allergic rhinitis or rhino-conjunctivitis, a condition marked by runny nose and itchy, red and swollen eyes.

Only three of the 34 studies in the review directly compared shots and drops and, the investigators say, more head-to-head comparisons may shed better light on the comparative effectiveness of the two treatments. However, the researchers add, the results of the 31 remaining studies they looked at indicate both oral drops and allergy shots can successfully rid children of coughing, sneezing, runny noses, itchy eyes and wheezing.

The three studies that directly compared injections versus oral drops for symptom relief of dust mite-induced asthma and rhinitis showed no strong evidence that children given shots fared better than children who got oral drops, Kim said.

Both treatments, overall, caused relatively mild side effects, such as itching of the mouth, skin rashes or wheezing. A single severe reaction was reported following an injection.

More than 6 million children in the United States suffer from asthma, while allergic rhinitis affects 40 percent of American kids.

The research was funded by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality under grant number HHSA 290-2007-10061.

Co-investigators on the study were Sandra Lin, M.D.; Catalina Suarez-Cuervo, M.D.; Yohalakshmi Chelladurai, M.B.B.S., M.P.H.; Murugappan Ramanathan, M.D.; Jodi Segal, M.D., M.P.H.; and Nkiruka Erekosima, M.D., M.P.H., all of Johns Hopkins.

Related on the Web:
Hate Allergy Shots? Oral Allergy Drops are a Pretty Good Option for Some Allergy and Allergic Asthma Sufferers, Study Review Shows

Ekaterina Pesheva | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg

nachricht New potential cancer treatment using microwaves to target deep tumors
12.10.2016 | University of Texas at Arlington

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>