Korean J Med.  2013 Nov;85(5):452-456.

Diagnosis of Allergic Rhinitis

  • 1Division of Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology, Department of Internal Medicine, Chonnnam National University Medical School, Gwangju, Korea. yikoh@chonnam.ac.kr


Rhinitis is divided into allergic and non-allergic rhinitis. Non-allergic rhinitis includes inflammatory rhinitis, such as non-allergic rhinitis with eosinophilia syndrome (NARES) and infective rhinitis, and non-inflammatory rhinitis, such as vasomotor rhinitis and idiopathic rhinitis. Allergic rhinitis is diagnosed based on the presence of allergen-specific IgE and the documentation of relationship between the allergen and symptoms in patients with typical rhinitis symptoms, such as rhinorrhea, nasal obstruction, itchiness and/or sneezing. Local allergic rhinitis can be considered for differential diagnosis. Allergic rhinitis should be differentiated from non-allergic rhinitis by using skin prick test, serum specific IgE test, nasal cytology and/or allergen nasal provocation test. Allergic rhinitis should be differentiated from structural nasal diseases, such as septal deviation and nasal polyps. Rhinitis is frequently accompanied by paranasal sinusitis, which should be recognized in clinical practice. Management strategies differ between allergic and nonallergic rhinitis. In addition to pharmacotherapy, allergen avoidance and allergen-specific immunotherapy can be tried in patients with allergic rhinitis. Thus, the exact diagnosis is very important for the effective treatment in allergic rhinitis. The diagnostic tests for allergic rhinitis are reviewed.


Allergic rhinitis; Diagnosis; Skin test
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