Korean J Otorhinolaryngol-Head Neck Surg.  2013 May;56(5):256-265. 10.3342/kjorl-hns.2013.56.5.256.

Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Allergic Rhinitis

  • 1Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, National Medical Center, Seoul, Korea. ygmin312@dreamwiz.com


Allergic rhinitis (AR) requires treatment with a stepwise approach depending on the severity and duration of symptoms. Treatment options for AR include allergen avoidance, pharmacotherapy, immunotherapy, and surgery. Recently, anti-IgE antibody and specific antibody to cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)-4 or IL-5, have emerged in connection with understandings of the mechanisms of AR. Sublingual immunotherapy has been widely used based on its efficacy, safety, and convenience, which replaces subcutaneous immunotherapy. Although allergen avoidance and immunotherapy are theoretically ideal, it is thought that antihistamines and intranasal corticosteroids will play the main role in the management of AR until an innovative treatment develops. However, patients' main symptoms, the duration and severity of AR, patients' compliance, the safety of medication, and cost-effectiveness should be considered when treatment options are selected. In this aspect, physicians should be aware of the etiology, pathophysiology, symptoms, signs, and diseases related to AR in order to make correct diagnoses and choose proper treatment options for each patient.


Diagnosis; Hypersensitivity; Perennial allergic rhinitis; Physiopathology; Seasonal allergic rhinitis; Therapy
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