The AAAAI has created a reference guide of medications that are commonly used to treat allergies and asthma. All are prescription medications, unless otherwise noted. This guide includes:
- The FDA approved use for the medication
- The FDA approved dosing for the medication
- Generic and brand names
- Links to product website for further information about the medication
- Antihistamines: These medications are commonly used to treat allergies such as allergic rhinitis or sometimes urticaria (hives).
- Montelukast: These medications are used for relief of allergic rhinitis symptoms.
- Nasal Sprays: This table includes the various nasal sprays approved to treat allergic rhinitis and/or non-allergic rhinitis.
- Eye Drops: This table lists the medications available to treat allergic conjunctivitis (allergic eye).
- Allergic Emergency Medications: These are the medications used to treat anaphylaxis.
- Topical Ointments & Creams: Here are the topical medications used to treat conditions such as atopic dermatitis and eczema.
- Immunomodulators: This is a class of medication that includes an immune treatment of asthma and hereditary angioedema.
- Oral Corticosteroids: These medications are sometimes used to treat severe allergies and can also be used as a rescue medication for asthma.
- Sublingual Immunotherapy (SLIT) Allergy Tablets: Allergy tablets are another form of allergy immunotherapy therapy and involves administering the allergens under the tongue generally on a daily basis.
The AAAAI follows the National Institutes of Health publication "Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Management of Asthma (EPR-3)" to list the medications.
Long-term control medications: Prevent symptoms and are taken daily
- Inhaled Corticosteroids: The most consistently effective long-term control medication.
- Long-Acting Beta-Agonists (LABAs): These are used in combination with inhaled corticosteroids.
- Cromolyn and Theophylline: Used as alternative controller medications (not preferred).
- Leukotriene Modifiers: Used as alternative controller medications.
- Immunomodulators: Omalizumab modifies the allergic immune response.
Quick-relief medications: Take only as needed for symptom relief
- Short-Acting Beta-Agonists (SABAs): relax airway muscles to give prompt relief of symptoms.
If your allergist has prescribed medications for you, it is important to continue to take them so your symptoms are controlled. There are prescription assistance programs that offer reduced cost or free medications to individuals who qualify based on financial need. Pharmaceutical companies offer many of these programs and information is available by either looking on the web or by directly calling these companies.
There are also programs such as Partnership for Prescription Assistance, a program offered by pharmaceutical research companies or NeedyMeds, a non profit organization that assist patients explore programs for which they may be eligible in terms of receiving free or reduced cost medications.