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Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2004 Oct;135(2):143-7. Epub 2004 Sep 2.

Comparison of the effects in the nose and skin of a single dose of desloratadine and levocetirizine over 24 hours.

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Allergy and Respiratory Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy.



Desloratadine (DL) and levocetirizine (LCZ) are the newest commercialized antihistamines. Pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and clinical data are available for both drugs, but there is to date no direct comparison involving the nose and skin at the same time. We compared the effects of a single dose of the two drugs in the nose and skin over 24 h.


Twenty-three patients with symptomatic allergic rhinitis were enrolled in a randomized double-blind crossover administration of DL and LCZ. The histamine-induced wheal and flare was measured at baseline and 2 and 24 h after dosing. A reflective total symptom score (rTSS) for the previous 24 h was assessed before and after each dose. An instant symptom score was also measured at various time points after each drug.


LCZ provided greater inhibition of the flare at 2 h (p = 0.05) and at 24 h (p = 0.007) and greater inhibition of the wheal only at 2 h (p = 0.02). The decrease in wheal and flare was significant versus baseline (p = 0.007) with both drugs. The rTSS of the previous 24 h decreased significantly with both LCZ (11.53 vs. 8.0; p < 0.05) and DL (11.3 vs. 7.9; p < 0.05). The instant TSS progressively decreased in parallel with both drugs, but a difference in favor of LCZ was seen 2 h after dosing.


Single doses of DL and LCZ had a comparable effect on nasal symptoms, but LCZ was faster and displayed a greater effect on histamine wheal.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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