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Vol. 155, No. 2, 2011
Issue release date: May 2011
Section title: Original Paper
Int Arch Allergy Immunol 2011;155:160–166
(DOI:10.1159/000319821)

Birch Pollen Honey for Birch Pollen Allergy – A Randomized Controlled Pilot Study

Saarinen K. · Jantunen J. · Haahtela T.
aSouth Karelia Allergy and Environment Institute, Lappeenranta, and bDepartment of Allergy, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: 3/8/2010
Accepted: 7/21/2010
Published online: 12/23/2010

Number of Print Pages: 7
Number of Figures: 2
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 1018-2438 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0097 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/IAA

Abstract

Background: Only a few randomized controlled trials have been carried out to evaluate various complementary treatments for allergic disorders. This study assessed the effects of the preseasonal use of birch pollen honey (BPH; birch pollen added to honey) or regular honey (RH) on symptoms and medication during birch pollen season. Methods: Forty-four patients (59% female, mean age 33 years) with physician-diagnosed birch pollen allergy consumed either BPH or RH daily in incremental amounts from November 2008 to March 2009. Seventeen patients (53% female, mean age 36 years) on their usual allergy medication served as the control group. From April to May, patients recorded daily rhinoconjunctival and other symptoms and their use of medication. Fifty patients completed the study. Results: During birch pollen season in 2009, BPH patients reported a 60% lower total symptom score (p < 0.01), twice as many asymptomatic days (p < 0.01), and 70% fewer days with severe symptoms (p < 0.001), and they used 50% less antihistamines (p < 0.001) compared to the control group. The differences between the BPH and RH groups were not significant. However, the BPH patients used less antihistamines than did the RH patients (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Patients who preseasonally used BPH had significantly better control of their symptoms than did those on conventional medication only, and they had marginally better control compared to those on RH. The results should be regarded as preliminary, but they indicate that BPH could serve as a complementary therapy for birch pollen allergy.


  

Author Contacts

Correspondence to: Dr. Kimmo Saarinen
South Karelia Allergy and Environment Institute
Lääkäritie 15
FI–55330 Tiuruniemi (Finland)
Tel. +358 5 432 8333, Fax +358 5 432 8625, E-Mail all.env@inst.inet.fi

  

Article Information

Received: March 8, 2010
Accepted after revision: July 21, 2010
Published online: December 23, 2010
Number of Print Pages : 7
Number of Figures : 2, Number of Tables : 2, Number of References : 33

  

Publication Details

International Archives of Allergy and Immunology

Vol. 155, No. 2, Year 2011 (Cover Date: May 2011)

Journal Editor: Valenta R. (Vienna)
ISSN: 1018-2438 (Print), eISSN: 1423-0097 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/IAA


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Original Paper

Received: 3/8/2010
Accepted: 7/21/2010
Published online: 12/23/2010

Number of Print Pages: 7
Number of Figures: 2
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 1018-2438 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0097 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/IAA


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