Efficacy of pollen blocker cream in the treatment of allergic rhinitis

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2004 Aug;130(8):979-84. doi: 10.1001/archotol.130.8.979.


Objective: To assess the efficacy and safety of a pollen blocker crème for prophylaxis of symptoms in patients with seasonal or perennial allergic rhinitis.

Design: Double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study conducted from November 2001 through September 2002 in 2 outpatient centers in Germany and 1 in Russia. Ninety-one patients aged 18 to 55 years with at least a 2-year history of seasonal or perennial allergic rhinitis confirmed by history and positive skin test results were randomly assigned to receive pollen blocker cream (n = 43) or carboxymethylcellulose in gel (placebo) (n = 48) applied sparingly to the lower internal nose region 4 times daily for a total of 9 days. The efficacy of treatment was assessed by means of nasal provocation testing. The investigators assessed the nasal symptom severity scores (range, 0-6), and the changes in nasal airflow after allergen application were measured by anterior rhinomanometry.

Results: The median score fell from 4 to 1 after application of the pollen blocker cream (P<.001) and from 4 to 3 in the placebo group (P<.05). The difference between the 2 groups after the second provocation was highly significant (P<.001). The increase in airflow in response to treatment was roughly 20% in the blocker group compared with only about 10% in the placebo group, relative to an airflow rate (299 mL/s) measured after provocation on day 1.

Conclusions: The blocker was significantly more effective than placebo and reduced the typical symptoms of allergic rhinitis in response to nasal challenge with allergen by nearly 60% (placebo reduced symptoms by 25%). The pollen blocker cream did not produce any adverse effects. Therefore, the efficacy of the investigational product can be rated as good.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Allergens / adverse effects
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Carboxymethylcellulose Sodium
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Germany / epidemiology
  • Histamine H1 Antagonists / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nasal Provocation Tests
  • Pollen / adverse effects
  • Pulmonary Ventilation / physiology
  • Rhinitis, Allergic, Perennial / drug therapy*
  • Rhinitis, Allergic, Perennial / etiology
  • Rhinitis, Allergic, Perennial / physiopathology
  • Russia / epidemiology
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Allergens
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Histamine H1 Antagonists
  • Carboxymethylcellulose Sodium