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Allergy. 1996 Oct;51(10):724-31.

Idiopathic anaphylaxis: long-term follow-up, cost, and outlook.

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  • 1Division of Allergy-Immunology, Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Illinois, USA.


To determine the efficacy of oral corticosteroids, antihistamines, and sympathomimetics in treating patients with idiopathic anaphylaxis, the charts of 225 patients diagnosed with idiopathic anaphylaxis from 1971 to 1990 treated at a single center were reviewed. Sixty-one patients (34 females and 27 males) were available for long-term follow-up. Ages ranged from 10 to 68 years with an average of 39 years. Patients with frequent episodes were treated with a protocol of oral corticosteroids, antihistamines, and sympathomimetics. Patients with infrequent episodes were treated for acute episodes only. The number of emergency room visits, hospitalizations, intensive care unit admissions, and length of time in remission were recorded. Sixty-five percent of patients with infrequent episodes and 91% of patients with frequent episodes of idiopathic anaphylaxis went into remission. Significant decreases in emergency room visits occurred for the idiopathic anaphylaxis-generalized-frequent group (P < 0.016), the idiopathic-anaphylaxis-generalized-infrequent group (P < 0.0001), and the idiopathic anaphylaxis-angioedema-infrequent group (P < 0.039). Significant decreases in the number of hospitalizations (P < 0.022) and intensive care unit admissions (P < 0.009) occurred for the idiopathic anaphylaxis-generalized-infrequent and frequent groups, respectively. Overall, an estimated $184 740 was saved with the treatment program, for 546 patient-years. Idiopathic anaphylaxis can be controlled and remission induced in most patients. An estimated $11 million per year can be saved for patients in the USA on the basis of the estimated prevalence in this country.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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