Background: Omalizumab is prescribed as a step-up therapy for patients with moderate to severe allergic asthma uncontrolled on high-dose inhaled corticosteroids and long acting beta agonists. However, hypersensitivity reactions may lead to its discontinuation and subsequent worsening or loss of asthma control. No successful desensitization protocols to omalizumab have been previously reported.
Objective: We aimed to determine the efficacy and safety of a novel one-day outpatient omalizumab desensitization protocol for patients with hypersensitivity reactions to omalizumab.
Methods: We retrospectively assessed the efficacy of omalizumab desensitization protocol performed in a university allergy-immunology clinic from July 2009 to July 2010.
Results: We successfully desensitized 3 patients with moderate-severe asthma to omalizumab. After desensitization all patients had improvement in asthma control and were able to discontinue or decrease chronic systemic steroid therapy.
Conclusions: This novel outpatient omalizumab desensitization protocol was a safe and effective approach for the treatment of omalizumab hypersensitivity in patients with moderate to severe allergic asthma who required omalizumab therapy.