Nasal and ocular challenges

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Abstract

Nasal and ocular challenges facilitate the evaluation of subjective and objective responses to defined allergen or irritant exposure. Nasal and ocular allergen challenges are the gold standard to diagnose allergic rhinitis and conjunctivitis, respectively, and aid in the evaluation of novel therapies in clinical trials. Additionally, nasal and ocular allergen challenges might help identify medically relevant allergens in clinical practice. Nonspecific or irritant challenges evaluate mucosal hyperreactivity. Direct mucosal challenges, which can be performed in an office or research setting, expose the participant to higher allergen doses than common in the natural environment. Park studies and environmental chambers, which are most practical in clinical trials, more closely simulate natural allergen exposure. International consensus guidelines for nasal and ocular challenges do not exist. Therefore the positivity criteria, methodologies, and extract or allergen preparations used in challenges vary in the literature. Regardless of these limitations, nasal and ocular challenges are helpful clinical and research tools for nasal and ocular diseases.

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