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March 15, 1976

Oral Bronchodilators Containing Tartrazine

Author Affiliations

National Jewish Hospital and Research Center Denver
From the Division of Pediatric Clinical Immunology (Dr Buswell) and the Pharmacy Service (Mr Lefkowitz), National Jewish Hospital and Research Center, Denver.

JAMA. 1976;235(11):1111. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03260370019024

IT IS well documented that many patients with asthma have adverse reactions to aspirin.1-4 A number of these same patients will have similar reactions to tartrazine (FD and C Yellow No. 5). The incidence of tartrazine sensitivity varies, depending on the study that is reported.

Samter and Beers1 found that 14 of 182 aspirin-sensitive patients were also sensitive to tartrazine (< 8%). In another study,2 they described 3 of 80 aspirin-sensitive patients who reacted to 25 mg of tartrazine. However, Juhlin et al5 found that seven of eight aspirin-sensitive patients reacted with asthma, urticaria, or both after 1 to 2 mg of tartrazine. A later article by Michaelsson and Juhlin6 reported that tartrazine provocation induced objective adverse reactions in 21 of 52 patients with a history of chronic urticaria or angioedema. Moreover, two of these patients had no apparent sensitivity to aspirin. They also noted