What is the pathophysiology of allergic rhinitis (hay fever)?

Updated: Dec 26, 2018
  • Author: Javed Sheikh, MD; Chief Editor: Michael A Kaliner, MD  more...
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Answer

Allergic rhinitis involves inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, eyes, eustachian tubes, middle ear, sinuses, and pharynx. The nose invariably is involved, and the other organs are affected in certain individuals. Inflammation of the mucous membranes is characterized by a complex interaction of inflammatory mediators but ultimately is triggered by an immunoglobulin E (IgE)–mediated response to an extrinsic protein. [7]


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