Hives | Causes, Diagnoses, and Treatment

Originally posted on September 21, 2022 @ 9:09 am

Have you ever heard of hives? Do you actually understand what they are? Learn more about this typical skin issue.

What is a Hives?

Hives is also known as  (Urticaria)
A quick onset of light red bumps or welts on the skin is referred to as Urticaria, commonly known as hives. Angioedema refers to the swelling that frequently accompany hives.

Hives may be brought on by drugs, allergic responses, chemicals in particular foods, insect stings, sunshine, and other factors. Finding the precise cause of hives is frequently challenging.

what is hives
what is hives

What causes Hives?

There are numerous varieties of hives, including as:

A severe Urticaria: These hives don’t last more than six weeks. Foods, drugs, and infections are the most frequent culprits. Additionally, infections and insect stings could be to blame

Nuts, chocolate, seafood, tomatoes, eggs, fresh berries, and milk are the foods that produce hives the most frequently. Compared to prepared foods, fresh foods frequently produce hives. Perhaps the culprits are some preservatives and food additives.

Aspirin, other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (such as ibuprofen), blood pressure medications (particularly ACE inhibitors), and pain relievers like codeine are among the substances that can result in hives.

Chronic Urticaria These hives are chronic, lasting longer than six weeks. In contrast to those causing acute Urticaria, the cause is typically harder to pinpoint. The reason is typically untraceable in patients with persistent Urticaria. However, in other circumstances, the issue could be brought on by cancer, hepatitis, an infection, or thyroid problems.

Organs include the muscles, gastrointestinal tract, and lungs can also be impacted by chronic Urticaria. Breathlessness, aches and pains in the muscles, nausea, and diarrhea are some symptoms.

Physical Urticaria in the body Something that stimulates the skin, such as cold, heat, sun exposure, vibration, pressure, sweating, or exercise, is what causes these hives. Rarely do the hives show up elsewhere; they typically develop where the skin was stimulated. Within an hour, the majority of the hives appear.

Dermatographism. Hives develop after vigorously stroking or scratching the skin in this common type of physical urticaria. Other types of urticaria can also coexist with these hives.

what is hives
what is hives

Contact Dermatitis and Its Connection If  :A painful or itchy rash known as contact dermatitis develops after your skin comes into contact with an irritant or something to which you are allergic (allergic contact dermatitis). It differs from bee hives. But occasionally, contact dermatitis patients who come into contact with an allergen also develop hives.

How Are Hives Diagnosed?

In an effort to identify the potential cause of the hives, your doctor will need to ask numerous questions. Testing will be based on your medical history and a thorough examination by your doctor because there are no specific tests for hives or the associated swelling of angioedema.

Skin tests may be used by your doctor to determine what you are allergic to. Or they might examine your blood to determine if you have a disease.

Treatment for Hives

Finding and eliminating the trigger is the best way to treat hives, but it is a difficult task. Typically, your doctor will recommend antihistamines to help with symptoms. To stop hives from developing in the first place, antihistamines work best when taken on a regular schedule.

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Antihistamines or a combination of drugs may be used to treat chronic hives. Oral steroids might be prescribed if antihistamines don’t relieve the symptoms. A biologic medication called omalizumab (Xolair) has also been approved to treat persistent hives in patients older than 12 years old.

You might require an injection of epinephrine or a cortisone drug for severe hives.

How Should Hives Be Handled?

what is hives
what is hives

Here are some recommendations while you wait for the hives and swelling to go away:

  • To the affected areas, apply cool compresses or moist cloths.
  • In an airy space, try to work and rest.
  • Don loose-fitting, light clothing.

When Should I Consult a Doctor {Physician} About Hives?

Call your doctor right away if you have hives and any of the following symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Wheezing
  • breathing challenges
  • a feeling of chest pain
  • the face, lips, or tongue swelling


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