Hypersensitivity to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) - classification, diagnosis and management: review of the EAACI/ENDA(#) and GA2LEN/HANNA*

Allergy. 2011 Jul;66(7):818-29. doi: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.2011.02557.x. Epub 2011 Feb 14.


Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are responsible for 21-25% of reported adverse drug events which include immunological and nonimmunological hypersensitivity reactions. This study presents up-to-date information on pathomechanisms, clinical spectrum, diagnostic tools and management of hypersensitivity reactions to NSAIDs. Clinically, NSAID hypersensitivity is particularly manifested by bronchial asthma, rhinosinusitis, anaphylaxis or urticaria and variety of late cutaneous and organ-specific reactions. Diagnosis of hypersensitivity to a NSAID includes understanding of the underlying mechanism and is necessary for prevention and management. A stepwise approach to the diagnosis of hypersensitivity to NSAIDs is proposed, including clinical history, in vitro testing and/or provocation test with a culprit or alternative drug depending on the type of the reaction. The diagnostic process should result in providing the patient with written information both on forbidden and on alternative drugs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / immunology
  • Aspirin / adverse effects*
  • Aspirin / immunology
  • Asthma / chemically induced
  • Asthma / diagnosis
  • Child
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / classification
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / diagnosis*
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / immunology
  • Drug Hypersensitivity / therapy*
  • Europe
  • Humans
  • Hypersensitivity, Immediate / chemically induced
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Urticaria / chemically induced
  • Urticaria / diagnosis


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Aspirin