Urticaria

Urticaria (hives, welts or nettle rash) is a raised, red, itchy rash that appears on the skin. The raised marks in the rash are called weal. Each weal is short-lived, but the rash can move about.

Types—

Acute

Urticaria lasts less than six weeks

Chronic

Urticaria lasts for six weeks

Causes —

Acute urticaria

  • Allergen 
  1. certain foods (nuts, shellfish or eggs)
  2. latex
  3. wasp sting
  • Infections

Colds or the flu

  • Irritants
  1. chemicals
  2. nettles
  3. insect bites
  • Medicines

NSAIDs

  • Physical triggers
  1. pressure to the skin
  2. change in temperature
  3. sunlight
  4. exercise
  5. water

Chronic urticaria

More or less autoimmune disease

  • Chronic illnesses and infections
  1. Thyroid disease
  2. Viral hepatitis
  3. Intestinal parasites
  4. Infectious mononucleosis
  5. HIV
  6. SLE
  • Stress
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Warm temperature
  • Prolonged pressure on the skin
  • Medications( NSAIDs and codeine)

Symptoms And Signs

  • Itching
  • Wheals

Clearly defined edges, join together to form larger areas of flat, raised skin. May change shape, disappear, and reappear soon

  • Urticaria vasculitis
  • Angioedema

Investigations—

Acute urticaria

Allergy test

Chronic urticaria

  • CBC
  • Stool test
  • ESR
  • Thyroid function test
  • liver function tests

Treatment–

Ayurvedic Medicines

Complications

  • Angioedema

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Anaphylaxis

Prevention–

Avoid intake of certain chemicals in food

vasoactive amines, found in–

  • shellfish
  • strawberries
  • tomatoes
  • fish
  • chocolate
  • pineapple

salicylates, found in–

  • tomatoes
  • spices
  • orange juice
  • raspberries
  • tea

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