Clinical effectiveness of a mite allergen-impermeable bed-covering system in asthmatic mite-sensitive patients.J Allergy Clin Immunol 2004; 114(4):858-62JA
Exposure to allergens plays a role in the development of bronchial hyperresponsiveness and in the chronic inflammatory response seen in asthmatic patients. House dust mites (HDMs) are an important source of allergen. Reduction of these allergens might lead to better lung function and reduction of asthma symptoms.
The effect of HDM-impermeable covers on HDM allergen levels, peak flow values, and asthma symptoms were measured. Therefore a randomized clinical trial was carried out.
Fifty-two allergic asthmatic patients were randomly allocated to use the HDM-impermeable or placebo covers. During the study period, daily peak flow and asthma symptom scores were recorded. Dust samples were taken from the mattresses.
We observed a significant reduction in HDM allergen levels on the mattresses after encasing them with HDM-impermeable covers (reduction of 87% of Der p 1 in micrograms per gram of dust; P <.001). Baseline symptoms were so low that no improvement could be established. Morning peak expiratory flow is significantly higher in the intervention group compared with that seen in the placebo group during the study period (beta=20.2; P <.01).
HDM-impermeable covers significantly decreased the level of HDM allergens. Furthermore, morning peak flow was significantly increased during the intervention period. This study indicates that HDM allergen-avoidance measures might have beneficial effects on allergen reduction and asthma outcome.