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Allergol Immunopathol (Madr). 1998 Nov-Dec;26(6):277-82.

Comparative study between fluticasone propionate and cetirizine in the treatment of allergic rhinitis.

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School of Allergology and Clinical Immunology, University of Messina, Italy.

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  • Allergol Immunopathol (Madr) 1999 May-Jun;27(3):173.


Among the most frequently used drugs in the treatment of allergic rhinitis we have to mention topical nasal corticosteroids and H1 antihistamines used both systemically and topically. The present study focused the effectiveness and tolerability of cetirizine and fluticasone propionate in seasonal allergic rhinitis. 54 patients, divided into three homogeneous groups, underwent the following different treatments: Group 1: Placebo of fluticasone (2 puff per nostril once daily by aerosol) + cetirizine (10 mg/die per os) for 60 days. Group 2: Fluticasone (100 mg per nostril once daily by aerosol) + placebo of cetirizine (per os) for 60 days. Group 3: Cetirizine (10 mg/die per os) for 60 days + fluticasone (100 mg per nostril once daily by aerosol) for 20 days. The patients reported nasal symptoms (sneezing, obstruction, itching, rhinorrea) on a clinical diary. ECP levels in nasal secretions were investigated in all patients to determine the anti-inflammatory activity of both treatments. Cetirizine resulted very effective in the treatment of sneezing, itching and acqueous rhinorrea whereas not much effective on nasal obstruction. On the contrary, fluticasone, which acted effectively on nasal obstruction, resulted inefficacious on the other symptoms. The third group of patients achieved the best results on all four symptoms, including obstruction, which continued even after interrupting the treatment with fluticasone. The ECP levels were significantly reduced by both treatments. The side effects in all 3 groups were rare and not serious. From these results we can assert that the synergic action of the two drugs, achieves the best effectiveness, that the fluticasone treatment can be limited to 20 days cycles and finally that both molecules are well tolerated.

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