Odactra®

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: December 2022 | Last updated: December 2022

Odactra® is a type of immunotherapy used to treat dust mite allergies. It is a sublingual (under the tongue) treatment. You take Odactra as a tablet that dissolves under the tongue. It can be prescribed for adults 18 to 65 years old.1

What are the active ingredients in Odactra?

The ingredients in Odactra are extracts from 2 types of house dust mites: Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus and Dermatophagoides farinae.1-3

How does Odactra work?

Odactra relieves sneezing, runny or itchy nose, stuffiness, and itchy or watery eyes caused by dust mite allergies. It does this by slowly introducing small amounts of the allergen (dust mites) to the body. Over time, this may help the body better tolerate exposure.1,4

Odactra is a long-term treatment, meaning it does not stop symptoms quickly. For short-term relief, you may still need other medicines that work more quickly.4

The first time you take this drug, it will be given in a doctor's office so they can monitor you for symptoms of a severe reaction. If you do not have a severe reaction, your doctor may let you take this drug at home.1

Wash your hands after handling this medicine. Do not take it with food or drink, or eat or drink anything for 5 minutes after taking the tablet.1

Possible side effects

In clinical trials, the most common side effects were:1

  • Tickle in the throat
  • Itchy mouth or ear
  • Swelling in the back of the mouth or throat, lips, or tongue
  • Tongue pain
  • Nausea or stomach pain
  • Mouth sores
  • Changes in how food tastes

These are not all the possible side effects of Odactra. Talk to your doctor about what to expect when taking Odactra. You also should call your doctor if you have any changes that concern you when taking Odactra.

Boxed warning

Odactra has a boxed warning, the strictest warning from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It has this warning because it can cause severe allergic reactions, such as anaphylaxis. Symptoms may include:1

  • Trouble breathing, swallowing, or speaking
  • Tightness or swelling of the lips, tongue, or throat
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Rapid or weak heartbeat
  • Severe stomach cramps or pain, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
  • Severe flushing
  • Severe itchy skin in the mouth, tongue, ears, and throat

Because a severe reaction is possible, your doctor should also prescribe an epinephrine auto-injector (such as EpiPen®) for you to use at home if needed.

Other things to know

Talk to your doctor if you have a gelatin allergy. Odactra contains marine, non-gelling gelatin as a non-active ingredient.1

Odactra should not be prescribed for people who:1

  • Have severe or uncontrolled asthma
  • Have eosinophilic esophagitis
  • Have any history of a severe allergic reaction
  • Take beta blockers and who do not respond to epinephrine or inhaled bronchodilators
  • Have another condition that may limit their ability to survive anaphylaxis

If this medicine causes ulcers or sensitive skin in the mouth, talk with your doctor. You may be told to stop taking it until your mouth has healed.1

It is not known if Odactra is safe to take while pregnant or breastfeeding. Safety in children under age 18 or adults over age 65 is also unknown.1

Before beginning treatment for dust mite allergies, tell your doctor about all your health conditions and any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.

For more information, read the full prescribing information of Odactra.

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