|Abstract (Croatian)|| |
Allergy is a hypersensitivity reaction initiated by immunological mechanisms.
Prevalence of allergies is increasing all over the world. Pollen allergy is caused by pollen, a fine powder containing microgametophytes of seed plants, which produce male gametes. Pollen allergies usually occur from spring
to autumn, following the pollinating period of plants, which is more or less the same
every year. Pollen allergy symptoms are allergic rhinitis, which includes sneezing, nose
itching, runny nose, stuffy nose and breathing difficulties, and allergic conjunctivitis,
which involves redness of the eyes and tearing itchy eyes. Symptoms that may develop
later are rare, but more severe. People who have allergies should follow some simple rules of prevention and
treatment. The first step is avoiding the allergen, e.g. staying indoors on hot windy
days, keeping the windows closed and changing soon after coming from outdoors.
Pharmacological prevention is also recommended – taking vitamins, minerals, phototherapeutics,
probiotics, and applying aromatherapy and homeopathy.
To prevent or treat the symptoms, medicament therapy is needed. Mild allergic
rhinitis is characterized by nose symptoms. If symptoms are more severe and are
affecting the quality of life, then allergic rhinitis is moderate/severe. Medicament therapy
depends on the disease severity and symptoms (allergic rhinitis and/or allergic
conjunctivitis). Treatment may include nasal decongestants, antihistamines, corticosteroids
and leukotrienes. Mild and intermittent symptoms are usually treated adequately
with oral antihistamines or nasal decongestants, or both, as required. If the
symptoms are severe, then oral antihistamines and intranasal corticosteroids are recommended.
Patient education is a key step in the treatment of allergy and should be implemented
in all areas of the health system, with the pharmacist having the key role.