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Brigham and Women’s Drug Hypersensitivity and Desensitization Center

The Drug Hypersensitivity and Desensitization Center serves patients with drug allergy, providing them with the opportunity to receive the first line treatments that are essential to their medical care. Through careful evaluation, select testing, and desensitization, the team of providers in the Center has facilitated the care of thousands of patients.

How We Can Help

  • Evaluation and diagnosis of Drug Hypersensitivity
  • Desensitization to antibiotics, chemotherapy, monoclonal antibodies, iron products, small molecules, progesterone, and other medications
  • Participation in clinical trials and ongoing desensitization research

Mariana C. Castells, MD, Director, Drug Hypersensitivity and Desensitization Center at Brigham and Women's Hospital, describes the process of drug desensitization, a method in which a drug can be safely re-introduced to a patient who has become allergic to their medication. Read the Drug Desensitization video transcript.

What Sets Us Apart

  • We have the largest center in the US that provides evaluation of drug hypersensitivity, risk stratification, and desensitization options including high-risk desensitization for chemotherapy and monoclonal antibodies. Our program has performed thousands of desensitizations since its inception in 1995, with almost 900 desensitizations now performed on a yearly basis.
  • With careful risk stratification, we are able to offer desensitizations across a range of settings including outpatient clinics at the Building of Transformative Medicine and at the Dana-Farber Cancer Research Center, and inpatient units at BWH and BWH Faulkner Hospitals.
  • Our 3 bag, 12 step protocol has been used nationally and internationally and has received national and international recognition for providing improved patient survival.
  • We offer participation in ongoing clinical studies on the genetics of drug allergy, nanoparticles for allergy diagnosis, and therapeutic trials.
  • Our center has supported numerous clinical studies that have led to discoveries and publications.
  • National and international physicians, pharmacists, fellows, and nurses also rotate through the Center.

Our Experts


Associate Director

Attending Physicians

Desensitization Nurse Practitioner

  • Donna-Maria Lynch, FNP-BC

Desensitization Pharmacist

  • Kathleen Marquis Pharm D, PhD

Desensitization Coordinator

  • Sahar Hamadi

Schedule an Appointment

Please contact Sahar Hamadi at (617)-525-1237 to schedule an appointment. Referral Forms must be filled out by a referring physician.

Refer a Patient

All patient must be referred by a physician. Referral Forms must be filled out by a referring physician.

Highlighted References


Brigham and Women’s Hospital
60 Fenwood Road
Hale Building for Transformative Medicine
Boston, MA 02115
Phone: (617) 732-9850


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