2 The condition, current treatments and procedure

2 The condition, current treatments and procedure

The condition

2.1 Allergic rhinitis is inflammation of the inside of the nose caused by an allergen such as pollen, house dust mites or mould. It causes symptoms such as sneezing, itchiness and a blocked or runny nose. Most people with allergic rhinitis have mild symptoms that can be easily and effectively treated. For some people, however, symptoms can be severe and persistent and have a significant impact on quality of life.

Current treatments

2.2 First-line treatments for allergic rhinitis include medication such as antihistamines and intranasal corticosteroids. For more severe or persistent symptoms that do not respond to medication, immunotherapy (sublingual or subcutaneous) is sometimes used.

The procedure

2.3 Intranasal phototherapy involves using a device with light-emitting probes, which are inserted into the nasal cavity for several minutes at a time. Some devices are designed to be self-administered, whereas others are administered by a clinician. There are different devices available and the duration and dose of treatment varies. The devices use different frequencies of light, ranging from ultraviolet to infrared.

2.4 Intranasal phototherapy is claimed to increase local blood flow and suppress inflammation. The aim is to reduce the symptoms of allergic rhinitis.