Giménez-Arnau, A. (Autor de correspondencia); Bartra, J.; Ferrer Puga, Marta
; Jauregui, I.; Borbujo, J.; Figueras, I.; Muñoz-Bellido, F. J.; Pedraz, J.; Serra-Baldrich, E.; Tejedor-Alonso, M. A.; Velasco, M.; Terradas, P.; Labrador, M.
Objective: During its first year, the AWARE study assessed disease activity, patient quality of life (QOL), and treatment patterns in chronic urticaria (CU) refractory to H1-antihistamines (H1-AH) in clinical practice. Methods: We performed an observational, prospective (24 months), international, multicenter study. The inclusion criteria were age _>18 years and H1-AH-refractory CU (>2 months). At each visit, patients completed questionnaires to assess disease burden (Urticaria Control Test [UCT]), disease activity (7 day-Urticaria Activity Score [UAS7]), and QOL (Dermatology Life Quality index [DLQI], Chronic Urticaria Quality of Life Questionnaire [CU-Q2oL], and Angioedema Quality of Life Questionnaire [AE-QoL]). We present data for Spain. Results: The study population comprised 270 evaluable patients (73.3% female, mean [SD] age, 48.9 [14.7] years). At baseline, 89.3% were prescribed a CU treatment. After 1 year, first-and second-line treatments became less frequent and third-line treatments became more frequent. At baseline, 47.0% of patients experienced angioedema; at 1 year, this percentage had fallen to 11.8%. The mean (SD) AE-QoL score decreased from 45.2 (28.7) to 24.0 (25.8). The mean (SD) UCT score decreased from 7.0 (4.5) to 12.1 (4.1). According to UAS7, 38.2% of patients reported absence of wheals and itch in the previous 7 days at 1 year compared with 8.3% at baseline. The mean (SD) DLQI score decreased from 8.0 (7.4) to 2.8 (4.6). At the 1-year visit, the percentage of patients reporting a high or very high impact on QOL fell from 29.9% to 9.6%. Conclusions: H1-AH-refractory CU in Spain is characterized by absence of symptoms and a considerable impact on QOL. Continuous follow-up of CU patients and third-line therapies reduce disease burden and improve patients' QOL.