Allergies Could Hit Hard This Fall if High Temps, Storms and Tornadoes Strike as Predicted

Sep 17, 2013, 11:00 ET from Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America

Fall Allergy Capitals Report Ranks Most Challenging Cities for Allergies

LANDOVER, Md., Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This fall could be a perfect storm for allergy sufferers, as global warming conditions boost ragweed levels and fall storms and tornadoes disperse allergens and outdoor mold, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). The 2013 Fall Allergy Capitals™ report released today by AAFA ranks the most challenging cities to live in with allergies this fall in the United States. This new list shows the increased potential for severe and prolonged allergy symptoms as allergy sufferers endure unusually high fall temperatures. For specific allergy risks in 100 U.S. cities and tips on managing allergy symptoms, visit  

The Fall Allergy Capitals report is an independent research project of AAFA and is sponsored by DYMISTA® (azelastine HCl and fluticasone propionate) Nasal Spray 137 mcg / 50 mcg per Spray. DYMISTA is a prescription nasal spray indicated for the relief of symptoms of seasonal allergic rhinitis in patients 12 years of age and older who require treatment with both azelastine hydrochloride and fluticasone propionate for symptomatic relief. For full prescribing information for DYMISTA, please visit

"If allergies are left untreated or treated with the wrong medication, it can cause some serious complications," said Michael A. Kaliner, MD, Institute for Asthma and Allergy, Chevy Chase, Maryland. "It is important for allergy sufferers to learn more about the signs and symptoms of fall allergies and to visit an allergy specialist to seek treatment for their seasonal allergy symptoms."

There are several factors that could make this fall allergy season particularly difficult:

  • Recent studies suggest that rising temperatures and carbon dioxide levels could be extending ragweed season by as much as a month or more. This is especially true in the northern states in the U.S. where there are now longer periods of warm weather than before.
  • Pollen from weeds is a greater problem in the fall than in the spring, and fall weeds are surprisingly more prevalent than spring gardens in major urban areas and locations with significant construction.
  • Although the season has gotten off to a late start, with an above-average hurricane season predicted in the East and tornadoes expected in the Midwest, high winds from these weather patterns can cause increases in pollen distribution, leading to an increase in allergy symptoms.
  • Outdoor mold resulting from previous storms, including Superstorm Sandy, continues to grow and could be spread further by fall weather and wind patterns. 

Symptoms from allergic reactions to pollen and outdoor mold are often confused with a cold or the flu, particularly in the fall. This misdiagnosis can prevent patients from getting the correct treatment and lead to other medical problems.

"AAFA encourages the approximately 40 million Americans who suffer from seasonal allergies to learn more and consult an allergy specialist for proper diagnosis and treatment of seasonal allergy symptoms," said Mike Tringale, Senior Vice President of External Affairs at AAFA.

There is no cure for allergies. Nearly half of seasonal allergy patients are unhappy with how slowly their prescription medicines work and many patients still experience breakthrough of severe symptoms despite using a seasonal allergy medication. The best way for people to manage seasonal allergies is to avoid allergy triggers like pollen and outdoor mold, get properly diagnosed and use effective medications to treat symptoms.

Highlights from this year's Fall Allergy Capitals report include:

  • Wichita, KS claimed the top spot, followed by Jackson, MS (#2) and Knoxville, TN (#3).
  • Charleston, SC showed the biggest jump from last fall's allergy season, rising 16 spots from #42 to #26.
  • Nashville, TN went from #36 to #24, an increase of 12 over last year's rankings.
  • In the major metropolitan areas, Dallas, TX (up 8 places to #18) and Detroit, MI (up 9 places to #19) joined New Orleans, LA (#11) in the top 20.

An interactive map of 100 cities, resources about diagnosis, prevention and treatment for people with allergies, resources for physicians, and more information on the study methodology are available at

About the Research

The Fall Allergy Capitals™ ranking is an annual research and educational project of AAFA, designed to help patients recognize, prevent and safely treat allergy symptoms. Through this ranking, AAFA raises awareness of allergies and provides helpful information designed to improve the quality of life for people with allergies. AAFA and DYMISTA® are working together this year to promote the findings of the report, educate the public about seasonal allergies, and encourage people to get diagnosed and properly treated. The Allergy Capitals are identified and ranked based on pollen levels, use of over-the-counter and prescription allergy medication and number of Board Certified allergists in each city.

About AAFA

Now in its 60th year, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) is the leading nonprofit consumer and patient organization dedicated to fighting asthma and allergic diseases. AAFA provides free information to the public, offers educational programs to consumers and health professionals, leads advocacy efforts to improve patient care, and funds research to find cures. For more information, visit  

About Dymista®

DYMISTA® (azelastine HCl and fluticasone propionate) Nasal Spray 137 mcg / 50 mcg per Spray is the first and only prescription seasonal allergy nasal spray to both block histamine and treat inflammation of seasonal allergy symptoms.

Use of Dymista®

Dymista Nasal Spray is indicated for the relief of symptoms of seasonal allergic rhinitis in patients 12 years of age and older who require treatment with both azelastine hydrochloride and fluticasone propionate for symptomatic relief.


  • Dymista Nasal Spray can cause drowsiness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything that you need to be alert for until you know how Dymista Nasal Spray affects you
  • Do not drink alcohol or take any other medicines that can cause you to feel sleepy while using Dymista Nasal Spray. This can increase your chances of having serious side effects
  • Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effects that bother you or any side effects that do not go away
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant; it is not known if Dymista Nasal Spray will harm your unborn baby
  • The most common side effects with Dymista are changes in taste, nosebleeds, and headache
  • Dymista Nasal Spray may also cause the following side effects
    • Nasal problems. Symptoms of nasal problems include crusting in the nose, nosebleeds, runny nose, or a hole in the cartilage between your nostrils (nasal septal perforation). A whistling sound when you breathe may be a symptom of nasal septal perforation
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  • Slowed or delayed growth in children. A child's growth should be checked regularly when using Dymista Nasal Spray
  • These are not all of the possible side effects of Dymista Nasal Spray. For more information, ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

SOURCE Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America