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Allergic Rhinitis Therapy Decisions During a Routine Consultation: A Multicenter, Cross-Sectional Survey

Authors Gálffy G, Emmeluth M, Koltun A, Kopietz F, Nguyen DT, Kuhl HC

Received 14 November 2020

Accepted for publication 4 February 2021

Published 7 April 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 335—345


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Luis Garcia-Marcos

Gabriella Gálffy,1 Melanie Emmeluth,2 Arkady Koltun,3 Ferdinand Kopietz,2 Duc Tung Nguyen,2 Hans Christian Kuhl2

1Onco-Pulmonology Department, Pest County Pulmonology Hospital, Törökbálint, Hungary; 2Global Medical Affairs, MEDA Pharma GmbH & Co. KG (A Mylan Company), Bad Homburg, Germany; 3Global Medical Affairs, Mylan, Inc, Canonsburg, PA, USA

Correspondence: Gabriella Gálffy
Head of the Onco-Pulmonology Department and Research and Education Director of Pest County Pulmonology Hospital, Törökbálint 70, Munkácsy Mihály Street, Törökbálint, 2045, Hungary
Fax +36-23511598
Email [email protected]

Background: Allergic rhinitis (AR) is characterized by nasal and ocular symptoms, and substantially impacts the quality of life. Therapy selection for patients with AR depends on several factors, including symptom severity, age, patient preference, patient adherence, and cost.
Methods: The purpose of this multicenter, noninterventional, cross-sectional survey was to evaluate current therapy decisions in routine clinical practice for patients with symptomatic AR, and to determine how these decisions are linked to experiences with previous treatments and current symptom severity as assessed by aVAS. The survey included patients aged 18 years or older in Spain and 12 years or older in Hungary who consulted a physician for treatment of AR symptoms. Physicians recorded AR symptom burden in the previous 7 days, previous AR treatments, and the current AR therapy decision made at the visit.
Results: Overall, 72.9% of 181 patients (Spain) and 67.1% of 228 patients (Hungary) had received treatment in the previous 7 days. Among patients who had received step 3 treatment, 82.9% (Spain) and 75.8% (Hungary) received a free combination of intranasal corticosteroid (INCS) and antihistamines. Despite the high number of pretreated patients in both countries, 72.9% and 78.9% in Spain and Hungary, respectively, reported uncontrolled symptoms (VAS ≥ 50 mm). Of pretreated patients, 58.3% (Spain) and 61.4% (Hungary) received a step-up in treatment during the visit. Physicians more often prescribed a fixed combination of INCS and intranasal antihistamine than a free combination. However, of patients with uncontrolled symptoms who received previous therapy, 28.0% (Hungary) and 40.6% (Spain) did not receive a step-up as suggested by the guidelines.
Conclusion: Many patients suffering from acute AR symptoms consulted with their physician because of insufficient medications. Not all patients with uncontrolled symptoms received a step-up in treatment, underscoring the need for improved physician education to enhance AR management and control in accordance with consensus treatment guidelines.

Keywords: allergic rhinitis, therapy, decision-making, guidelines, intranasal corticosteroid, antihistamine, visual analog scale, noninterventional

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