Recently, a subcommittee of the FDA approved two different grass allergy tablets which are mentioned on our blog along with a generalized discussion of SubLingual ImmunoTherapy (SLIT.) Last month, the allergenic products subcommittee of FDA approved another allergy tablet – Ragweed. After review of the evidence regarding both safety and effectiveness, it was felt that data supports the approval of ragweed pollen allergy tablet. All three tablets are still awaiting final FDA approval, but all three will likely receive full approval soon.
It is still unclear regarding the cost and insurance coverage, but this will become more apparent once they are approved and begin to be prescribed. As previously mentioned in the December blog on SLIT, the benefit of SLIT tablets seems to be better for monosensitized patients (allergic to a single type of pollen such as grass or ragweed alone) and less and/or less clear with polysensitized patients (allergic to multiple pollens, dust mite, pet dander, mold, etc.). The vast majority of people with allergic sensitization in the United States appear to be polysensitized.
Lastly, allergy shots can be tailored to include all allergenic substances that someone has a sensitivity to and most data show that allergy shots are more effective that SLIT. Once the SLIT tablets become available, we would encourage you to discuss all the available options and the best treatment specifically designed for you with a Board-Certified Allergist, here at Atlanta ENT, Sinus & Allergy Associates.
By Dr. Rodney Johnson, MD, Atlanta ENT