Peanut Oral Immunotherapy With or Without H1 and H2 Antihistamine Premedication for Peanut Allergy (PISCES): A Placebo-Controlled Randomized Clinical Trial Academic Article uri icon

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  • Background

    Current forms of peanut oral immunotherapy (OIT) are associated with side effects, and there is a lack of evidence addressing how to mitigate them.


    To determine whether premedication with desloratadine and ranitidine results in fewer side effects during peanut OIT/desensitization.


    A total of 43 patients with peanut allergy (mean age, 7.6 ± 2.1 years, 37% females, 63% males, baseline eliciting dose, 33 ± 26 mg) were randomized to OIT with or without concomitant H1 and H2 antihistamine blockade, or double-placebo. Patients, study staff/investigators, and statisticians were blinded. The primary outcomes were the frequency and severity of OIT-induced adverse events. The secondary outcomes were quality of life and eliciting doses to blinded food challenge.


    Adverse reactions occurred more in the OIT groups compared with the double-placebo group (OIT with antihistamines vs double-placebo hazard ratio, 3.75 [95% CI, 2.79-4.72]; OIT with placebo antihistamines vs double-placebo, hazard ratio, 4.62 [95% CI, 3.61-5.62]). Patients given antihistamines cotreatment with OIT had a similar risk of adverse events compared with those who did not use antihistamines with OIT (hazard ratio, 1.23 [95% CI, 0.49-1.97]). OIT with and without antihistamines accelerated the incidence rate of adverse events compared with double-placebo (4.8 and 6.4 events per patient vs 3.5 per patient, incidence rate ratio, 2.49 [95% CI, 1.36-4.56] and 2.04 [95% CI, 1.01-4.15], respectively). Antihistamines pretreatment modestly reduced the frequency of moderate to severe adverse reactions among OIT-treated groups (1.9 per patient vs 4.2 per patient, incidence rate ratio, 0.46 [95% CI, 0.24-0.89]), primarily urticaria (0.6 vs 2.1 per patient) followed by abdominal pain (2.6 vs 4.2 per patient), but increased neuropsychiatric adverse events (primarily tiredness and sedation, 2.3 vs 0.7 per patient). Eliciting doses after treatment were similar in all groups. Quality of life improved similarly regardless of treatment with peanut OIT or placebo OIT.


    Peanut OIT with antihistamines modestly reduce the skin and gastrointestinal components of the high incidence of adverse reactions during OIT, and there are no clear differences in improvement in quality of life whether treated with OIT, OIT with antihistamines, or placebo OIT despite OIT being effective in inducing desensitization. Safer food allergy treatment approaches that importantly improve quality of life need to be proved in future robust randomized trials.

publication date

  • September 2022