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      Risk of True Allergy to Local Anesthetics: 10-Year Experience from an Anesthesia Allergy Clinic in China

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          Local anesthetics (LAs) have been widely used throughout the healthcare settings, especially in local anesthesia and pain management. The incidence of allergic reactions to LAs remains uncertain. The danger of allergic reactions to the use of LAs in every day of clinical practice is a matter of great concern. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate the risk of true allergy to LAs.


          This study retrospectively evaluated the medical records of patients who were referred to an anesthesia allergy clinic in China and underwent allergy tests with LAs over a 10-year period from 2009 to 2019. The following information was collected from medical records: demographics of the patients, reasons for referral, clinical features of drug hypersensitivity reaction (DHR), and test results with LAs. Skin tests combined with an in vitro method, basophil activation test (BAT), were used to investigate allergic reactions to LAs.


          A group of 109 patients were included in the analysis. The main reason for referral was the presence of a suspected DHR after procedures with LAs (n=68, 62%), the second most common reason for referral was a history of DHR to other drugs and the need to use LAs for upcoming procedures (n=41, 38%). Of the 68 patients with a suspected DHR to LAs, only six cases presented true allergy and showed positive results in skin tests and/or BAT. And all 41 patients who had a history of DHR to other drugs presented negative in all tests.


          Risk of true allergy to LAs may be very low. However, patients with a suspected history of DHR to LAs should be considered for allergy tests. Skin tests and BAT may be useful in the investigation and diagnosis of true allergy to LAs in clinical practice.

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          Most cited references 32

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          Drug allergy: an updated practice parameter.

           ,  ,   (2010)
          Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) result in major health problems in the United States in both the inpatient and outpatient setting. ADRs are broadly categorized into predictable (type A and unpredictable (type B) reactions. Predictable reactions are usually dose dependent, are related to the known pharmacologic actions of the drug, and occur in otherwise healthy individuals, They are estimated to comprise approximately 80% of all ADRs. Unpredictable are generally dose independent, are unrelated to the pharmacologic actions of the drug, and occur only in susceptible individuals. Unpredictable reactions are subdivided into drug intolerance, drug idiosyncrasy, drug allergy, and pseudoallergic reactions. Both type A and B reactions may be influenced by genetic predisposition of the patient
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            The clinical utility of basophil activation testing in diagnosis and monitoring of allergic disease.

            The basophil activation test (BAT) has become a pervasive test for allergic response through the development of flow cytometry, discovery of activation markers such as CD63 and unique markers identifying basophil granulocytes. Basophil activation test measures basophil response to allergen cross-linking IgE on between 150 and 2000 basophil granulocytes in <0.1 ml fresh blood. Dichotomous activation is assessed as the fraction of reacting basophils. In addition to clinical history, skin prick test, and specific IgE determination, BAT can be a part of the diagnostic evaluation of patients with food-, insect venom-, and drug allergy and chronic urticaria. It may be helpful in determining the clinically relevant allergen. Basophil sensitivity may be used to monitor patients on allergen immunotherapy, anti-IgE treatment or in the natural resolution of allergy. Basophil activation test may use fewer resources and be more reproducible than challenge testing. As it is less stressful for the patient and avoids severe allergic reactions, BAT ought to precede challenge testing. An important next step is to standardize BAT and make it available in diagnostic laboratories. The nature of basophil activation as an ex vivo challenge makes it a multifaceted and promising tool for the allergist. In this EAACI task force position paper, we provide an overview of the practical and technical details as well as the clinical utility of BAT in diagnosis and management of allergic diseases.
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              In vitro tests for drug hypersensitivity reactions: an ENDA/EAACI Drug Allergy Interest Group position paper.

              Drug hypersensitivity reactions (DHRs) are a matter of great concern, both for outpatient and in hospital care. The evaluation of these patients is complex, because in vivo tests have a suboptimal sensitivity and can be time-consuming, expensive and potentially risky, especially drug provocation tests. There are several currently available in vitro methods that can be classified into two main groups: those that help to characterize the active phase of the reaction and those that help to identify the culprit drug. The utility of these in vitro methods depends on the mechanisms involved, meaning that they cannot be used for the evaluation of all types of DHRs. Moreover, their effectiveness has not been defined by a consensus agreement between experts in the field. Thus, the European Network on Drug Allergy and Drug Allergy Interest Group of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology has organized a task force to provide data and recommendations regarding the available in vitro methods for DHR diagnosis. We have found that although there are many in vitro tests, few of them can be given a recommendation of grade B or above mainly because there is a lack of well-controlled studies, most information comes from small studies with few subjects and results are not always confirmed in later studies. Therefore, it is necessary to validate the currently available in vitro tests in a large series of well-characterized patients with DHR and to develop new tests for diagnosis.

                Author and article information

                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Ther Clin Risk Manag
                Therapeutics and Clinical Risk Management
                29 December 2020
                : 16
                : 1297-1303
                [1 ]Graduate School of Peking Union Medical College, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College , Beijing 100730, People’s Republic of China
                [2 ]Department of Anesthesiology, China-Japan Friendship Hospital , Beijing 100029, People’s Republic of China
                Author notes
                Correspondence: Jing ZhaoDepartment of Anesthesiology, China-Japan Friendship Hospital , No. 2 Yinghua East Road, Beijing100029, People’s Republic of China Email zhaojing1009@aliyun.com
                © 2020 Zuo et al.

                This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution – Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/). By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms ( https://www.dovepress.com/terms.php).

                Page count
                Figures: 1, Tables: 5, References: 32, Pages: 7
                Funded by: no funding;
                There is no funding to report.
                Original Research


                bat, skin tests, allergy, local anesthetics, adverse drug reactions


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