D-Dimer Plasma Levels Parallel the Clinical Response to Omalizumab in Patients with Severe Chronic Spontaneous Urticaria

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Omalizumab is very effective in the majority of patients with severe chronic spontaneous urticaria (CSU), but its mechanism of action is still unclear. In CSU the coagulation cascade is activated with an intensity that parallels the disease severity, and elevated plasma D-dimer levels are associated with a poor response to both antihistamines and cyclosporin. We measured D-dimer plasma levels before and after the first administration of omalizumab in 32 patients with severe CSU. A number of clinical and laboratory parameters were recorded, including the urticaria activity score, presence of angioedema, disease duration, C-reactive protein, anti-nuclear, and anti-thyroid antibodies. Baseline D-dimer levels were elevated in 19 (59%) cases. Omalizumab induced a complete response in 25 patients (78%), in most cases already after the first administration. At baseline, 14/25 responders had increased D-dimer plasma levels versus 5/7 non-responders. All responders showed a dramatic decrease of D-dimer plasma levels after the first administration of the drug (from 1,024 ± 248 [mean ± SE] to 251 ± 30 ng/mL; p = 0.003). In contrast, non-responders did not show any reduction in D-dimer levels after omalizumab administration (from 787 ± 206 to 1,230 ± 429 ng/mL; p = ns). In conclusion, plasma levels of D-dimer are frequently elevated in patients with severe CSU before omalizumab administration and decrease according to the clinical response of the disease to the drug, suggesting a possible effect of omalizumab on coagulation activation and fibrin degradation in a subset of CSU patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-44
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Archives of Allergy and Immunology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2017


  • Chronic urticaria
  • Coagulation
  • D-dimer
  • Omalizumab

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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