Olopatadine nasal spray may be as effective as fluticasone for allergic rhinitis

The efficacy of nasal antihistamines (NAHs) for allergic rhinitis (AR) is comparable with or better than second-generation oral antihistamines. NAHs have a faster onset of action and greater effect on congestion.

Limited data suggest that NAHs may be equivalent to intranasal corticosteroids at reducing congestion.

Olopatadine. Image source: Wikipedia, public domain.

Fluticasone propionate, Flonase (US and Canada) Flixonase (EU and Brazil). Image source: Wikipedia, public domain.

The efficacy of olopatadine 0.6% nasal spray (2 sprays/nostril b.i.d.) was compared with fluticasone 50 microg nasal spray (2 sprays/nostril q.d.) in a double-blind, randomized trial of 130 patients.

Both treatments reduced nasal and ocular symptoms throughout the 2-week study period.

The nasal symptom score decreased by 45.4% for patients treated with olopatadine and by 47.4% for those treated with fluticasone.

No significant between-treatment differences were determined for for congestion, runny nose, sneezing, itchy nose, and ocular symptoms. But olopatadine had a faster onset of action for reducing all symptoms.

The authors concluded that both olopatadine and fluticasone nasal sprays reduced nasal and ocular SAR symptoms with a faster and greater onset of action with olopatadine.

Medications for Allergic Rhinitis.

Comparison of olopatadine 0.6% nasal spray versus fluticasone propionate 50 μg in the treatment of seasonal allergic rhinitis. Kaliner, Michael A.; Storms, William; Tilles, Stephen; Spector, Sheldon; Tan, Ricardo; LaForce, Craig; Lanier, Bobby Q.; Chipps, Bradley. Allergy and Asthma Proceedings, Volume 30, Number 3, May/June 2009 , pp. 255-262(8).
Olopatadine 0.6% nasal spray better than placebo for allergic rhinitis in children http://goo.gl/G4AYy - Is it better than nasal steroids?
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