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Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology

Open Access

SCIg vs. IVIg: let’s give patients the choice!

  • Kathryn K Samaan1,
  • Marie-Claude RN Levasseur1,
  • Hélène Decaluwe1,
  • Claire St-Cyr1,
  • Hugo Chapdelaine2,
  • Anne Des Roches1 and
  • Elie Haddad1, 3
Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology201410(Suppl 2):A13

Published: 18 December 2014


Public HealthTreatment ModalitySingle CenterPrimary ImmunodeficiencyEqual Efficacy


Criteria governing the choice between intravenous (IV) and subcutaneous (SC) routes for immunoglobulin (Ig) substitution are not well defined. We assessed the consequences of giving the choice to the patient.


We retrospectively analyzed 143 patients with primary immunodeficiency, followed in a single center, which were offered the choice of IVIg or SCIg. We analyzed the route more frequently chosen, and the consequences on compliance. In a first cohort (n = 51, average follow up 52 months), patients already on IVIg were offered the choice to stay on IVIg or to switch to SCIg (switch cohort). In a second cohort (n = 92, average follow up 11 months), newly diagnosed patients were offered the choice between IVIg and SCIg before the first injection (new cohort).


In the switch cohort, 50/51 patients chose to switch to SCIg. Of these, 90% remained on SCIg. In the new cohort, 44/92 patients chose SCIg, of which 95% remained on SCIg. Among the 48 patients who chose IVIg, 73% switched to SCIg. Compliance issues were observed in only 10 patients.


Giving patients the choice of treatment modality is a safe strategy in terms of compliance. Home-based SCIg is much more frequently chosen than hospital-based IVIg. Given the equal efficacy and safety between hospital-based IVIg and home-based SCIg, we believe that all patients should be given the choice regardless of physician’s belief of “idealness” of the candidate.

Authors’ Affiliations

Department of Pediatrics, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
Department of Allergy, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Montreal, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Sainte-Justine, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada


© Samaan et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.