Mast cell stabilizers are a class of medication used to prevent or treat inflammation in people with allergies and some types of asthma. These medications generally have fewer and milder side effects than antihistamines, however they take longer to work and are not as effective in relieving symptoms. Mast cell stabilizers are usually taken on a regular basis over a period of time to lessen the severity of allergy or asthma reactions. Like antihistamines, mast cell stabilizers work by interrupting the allergic cascade to prevent or reduce symptoms.
- Mast cell stabilizers are available in several different forms, and each is designed for a specific purpose.
- Ophthalmic treatments are used to treat the itching in the eyes commonly associated with some allergies, as well as redness, tearing and burning.
- Nasal treatments are used to treat sneezing, wheezing, runny nose and other symptoms associated with seasonal or chronic hay fever.
- Inhaled treatments are use to prevent the symptoms of asthma.
- Oral treatments are designed to treat the symptoms of mastocytosis, rare condition caused by an overabundance of mast cells in the body.