Rational approach to aspirin dosing during oral challenges and desensitization of patients with aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease

J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2009 Feb;123(2):406-10. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2008.09.048. Epub 2008 Dec 3.


Background: Aspirin desensitization improves clinical outcomes in most patients with aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease. Most protocols for desensitization are time-consuming.

Objective: Our objective was to use historical information about the course of aspirin desensitization to enhance the efficiency of the desensitization protocol.

Methods: Four hundred twenty subjects with suspected aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease underwent oral aspirin challenges. Their clinical characteristics were analyzed in relation to features of reactions during aspirin challenges.

Results: Large (FEV(1) decrease >30%) and moderate (FEV(1) decrease 21% to 30%) bronchial reactions occurred in 9% and 20% of subjects, respectively. Multivariate analysis identified risk factors associated with these larger reactions, including lack of leukotriene modifier use, baseline FEV(1) of less than 80% of predicted value, and previous asthma-related emergency department visits. Seventy-five percent of patients reacted to a provoking dose of either 45 or 60 mg. Only 3% of initial reactions occurred after 150- or 325-mg provoking doses, and none occurred after the 650-mg dose.

Conclusions: Most bronchial and naso-ocular reactions during oral aspirin challenges occurred within a narrow dosing range (45-100 mg). Only 1 of 26 patients without risk factors had a moderate reaction.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adult
  • Aspirin / administration & dosage*
  • Aspirin / adverse effects
  • Aspirin / immunology
  • Asthma / chemically induced
  • Asthma / immunology
  • Asthma / physiopathology
  • Asthma / therapy*
  • Bronchi / drug effects
  • Bronchi / physiopathology
  • Bronchial Provocation Tests
  • Desensitization, Immunologic / methods*
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / complications*
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / immunology
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors


  • Aspirin