Table of Contents
- Hives facts
- What are hives (urticaria) and angioedema? What do hives look like?
- What causes hives and angioedema?
- What are the different kinds of hives?
- What are the signs and symptoms of ordinary hives?
- What are the causes of ordinary hives?
- What are the causes of chronic hives?
- Are there other conditions that mimic hives?
- What is the treatment for hives?
- What is the prognosis of hives?
Are Hives Always Caused by an Allergy?
Hives are a very common reaction to all kinds of stimuli. While an allergic reaction can be a cause of hives, in the majority of outbreaks, the exact cause of hives is not known.
Quick GuideRosacea, Acne, Shingles: Common Adult Skin Diseases
- Hives (medically known as urticaria) are red, itchy, raised areas of skin that appear in varying shapes and sizes, each one characteristically lasts no longer than six to 12 hours.
- Hives are very common, and most often their cause is elusive.
- Hives can change size rapidly and move around, disappearing in one place and reappearing in other places, often in a matter of hours.
- Ordinary hives flare up suddenly.
- Occasionally hives are produced by direct physical stimulation by environmental forces like heat, cold, and sunlight.
- Treatment of hives is directed at symptom relief until the condition goes away on its own.
- Antihistamines are the most common treatment for hives.
- Hives typically are not associated with long-term or serious complications. Continue Reading
Bernstein, Jonathan A., et al. "The Diagnosis and Management of Acute and Chronic Urticaria: 2014 Update." J Allergy Clin Immunol 133.5 May 2014: 1270-1277.
Criado, Paulo Ricardo. "Chronic Urticaria in Adults: State-of-the-Art in the New Millennium." An Bras Dermatol 90.1 (2015): 74-89.
Fine, Lauren M., and Jonathan A. Bernstein. "Urticaria Guidelines: Consensus and Controversies in the European and American Guidelines." Curr Allergy Asthma Rep 15 (2015): 30.
Frigas, Evangelo, and Miguel A. Park. "Acute Urticaria and Angioedema." Am J Clin Dermatol 10.4 (2009): 239-250.
Langley, Emily W., and Joseph Gigante. "Anaphylaxis, Urticaria, and Angioedema." Pediatrics in Review 34 (2013): 247-258.
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