, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 245-252
Date: 03 May 2008

The clinical effectiveness of aspirin desensitization in chronic rhinosinusitis

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Aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease (AERD) is a chronic inflammatory disease characterized by chronic rhinosinusitis, nasal polyposis, asthma, and airway reactivity to aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). For patients who have inadequately controlled rhinosinusitis and/or asthma despite treatment with topical corticosteroids and leukotriene-modifying drugs, aspirin desensitization is an important therapeutic option. This review examines the evidence supporting the effectiveness of aspirin desensitization for the treatment of chronic rhinosinusitis in patients with AERD. Practical aspects of conducting safe aspirin desensitization procedures and optimizing therapeutic benefits are also reviewed. When conducted in accordance with current guidelines, aspirin desensitization is a safe procedure that allows patients with AERD who have an indication for aspirin or other NSAIDs to safely ingest these medications. There is now strong evidence that aspirin desensitization and daily aspirin therapy is effective for treatment of the chronic inflammatory disease of the upper airway and lower airways in AERD.