Definition of Allergic rhinitis (Hayfever):
Allergic disease with inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose. Caused by hypersensitivity to e.g. the protein constituents of certain pollens which are given off into the air while grasses and trees are in bloom. An allergic reaction is provoked in the mucous membranes of the airways, nose and eyes.
Causes/trigger of Allergic rhinitis (Hayfever):
- A congenital or acquired disposition of the immune system to overreact to certain introgenous or exogenous substances.
- These so-called allergens are usually inhaled (e.g. pollen, house dust mites, moulds) or get into the body via nutrition. Also contact with the skin may lead to allergic reactions.
Symptoms/signs/effects of Allergic rhinitis (Hayfever):
- Swollen mucous membranes of the nose
- Attacks of sneezing, runny nose
- Itching of the mucous membranes
- itching, reddened eyes
Diagnosis of Allergic rhinitis (Hayfever):
- Based on the symptoms described by the patient
- Skin tests
- Provocation test
Treatment of Allergic rhinitis (Hayfever):
- Avoiding the allergen would be the best therapeutical choice but often difficult to realize.
- The nasal douche helps by cleaning the mucous membranes and removing the allergens
- Medical treatment involves antihistamines, anti-allergic agents (e.g. DNCG ) or cortisone preparations
- In a hyposensitisation programme the body is confronted with an allergen in rising dose, until it is used to it and the excessive reaction of the immune system stops