Background: Omalizumab is approved for patients with poorly controlled asthma with serum IgE levels between 30 and 700 IU/mL and positive test results for perennial allergens. Its efficacy in patients with IgE levels greater than 700 IU/mL is unclear. Objective: To evaluate the response of asthmatic patients treated with omalizumab with IgE levels greater than 700 IU/mL. Methods: Asthmatic patients treated with omalizumab for 6 months or longer with elevated IgE levels were evaluated retrospectively. Emergency department (ED) visits, hospitalizations, change in forced expiratory volume in 1 second, corticosteroid bursts, and Asthma Control Test (ACT) scores were recorded for a period of 6 months before and after treatment. Results: Twenty-six patients with an IgE level greater than 700 IU/mL (group 1) were matched by age, sex, and severity of asthma to patients with an IgE of 30 to 700 IU/mL (group 2). The mean numbers of ED visits before and after treatment were 0.96 vs 0.23 (P =.008) in group 1 and 0.65 vs 015 (P =.02) in group 2. Both group 1 and group 2 had an improvement in asthma control based on the mean ACT score before and after treatment (15.6 vs 18.9 [P =.02] and 15.4 vs 19 [P =.006], respectively). There was also a significant reduction in the frequency of systemic corticosteroid use during the 6 months before and after treatment (2.58 vs 0.96 [P <.001] and 2.62 vs 1.23 [P <.001] systemic steroid treatments, respectively). Conclusion: Omalizumab was as effective in reducing ED visits, controlling asthma symptoms, and reducing the need for systemic corticosteroids in patients with IgE levels greater than 700 IU/mL compared with patients with levels of 30 to 700 IU/mL.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine