Urticaria

Urticaria, also termed as hives is a condition that appears on the skin often feels itching sensation. According to Medical research, it is estimated that about 20% of people get affected with urticaria at some point of their lives and more commonly affects women than men. Urticaria has been classified into two types:

Acute urticaria is mainly caused due to allergic reactions and can have many other reasons.

Chronic urticaria occurs due to health problems such as thyroid, hormone problems, cancer and viral infections and the exact cause is unknown.

Symptoms

Urticaria is kind of a rash that can affect any area of the skin and it appears in the form of red bumps, patches and white itchy welts of various shapes and sizes. Most common symptom of urticaria is itching which may be mild to severe. Symptoms occur frequently; they may come and go depending on the type of urticaria condition. Symptoms include:

  • Swelling throat
  • Itching
  • Patches
  • Red bumps

For some people symptoms become worse if they expose to certain condition such as heat, physical & mental stress, and alcoholic beverages.

Causes

Urticaria occurs when blood plasma gets leaked from blood vessels to the skin. Chronic hives may be caused due to other health problems such as thyroid, viral infections and immune system disorders. Sometimes, medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen and naproxen sodium can cause chronic urticaria. In rare cases, chronic hives cannot be identified and immediate medical attention is necessary when patient feel swelling of the tongue and difficulty breathing.

Diagnosis

Your doctor can identify Urticaria condition by looking at your skin. Skin biopsy, blood, urine and allergy tests are referred by a doctor to diagnose the disease. He may ask several questions to find out the cause. This includes,

  • Your daily activities
  • Any other health problems
  • Are you affected with hives before?

Doctor suggests you to undergo blood and allergy tests to check the blood cells and allergic reaction.

Treatment

Medical advice is not required if symptoms are mild because they may disappear on their own. Follow the below steps to get out of swelling and itching:

  • Avoid hot water.
  • Try to avoid tight clothes because it can irritate the area.
  • Doctor recommends you to take antihistamine such as diphenhydramine.

If hives become more severe, immediate medical attention is needed otherwise it may lead to other serious health problems. Corticosteroids are provided for a patient to get into control.

Prevention

The following steps may help you to protect yourself from Urticaria (hives):

  • Try to avoid exposure to certain substances that give you skin allergies.
  • Carry medicines along with you that are suggested by a doctor and try to avoid medications that may trigger hives.