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Xolair Reduces Seasonal Asthma Attacks for Inner City Kids: Study
Date:3/16/2011

n remains on the market.

The current analysis included 419 children with asthma from eight different urban areas across the United States. The children were between the ages of 6 and 20, and most had moderate to severe asthma. Sixty percent of the children were black and 37 percent were Hispanic.

All of the children were being treated for their asthma symptoms based on the guidelines from the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program. Study participants and their caregivers received education about controlling environmental asthma and allergy triggers, such as dust mites and cockroaches. They were also given mattress covers, pest traps and a new vacuum cleaner.

Half of the group was randomly selected to receive omalizumab injections once every two to four weeks (dosage varied by weight and disease severity), or a placebo injection. The study lasted 60 weeks.

At the start of the study, the children were having asthma symptoms an average of 1.96 days during a two-week period. Those who received omalizumab saw the duration of their symptoms drop to 1.48 days per two week period, a reduction of 24.5 percent, according to the study.

Those taking long-term preventive medications were able to reduce the amount of medication without experiencing an increase in symptoms. The treatment group had a 75 percent reduction in the number of hospitalizations compared to the placebo group.

And, the exacerbations in the omalizumab group were reduced -- 30.3 percent vs. 48.8 in the placebo group. The omalizumab group also didn't experience seasonal peaks in their asthma symptoms, which normally happens in the spring and the fall.

No differences in concern related to safety were noted between the two groups, the researchers reported. One patient in the omalizumab group developed anaphylaxis -- a life-threatening allergic reaction that has previously been linked to the drug -- compared to six patients in the placebo group who developed
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Xolair Reduces Seasonal Asthma Attacks for Inner City Kids: Study
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