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Chronic Urticaria (Hives) Need Help!

Hi, I am 21 and I’ve have been diagnosed with Chronic Urticaria by my doctor. It started over a year ago for no reason and the symptoms include getting small red dots all over my skin after physical contact. If contact continues these small dots increase in number and form larger red welts with a raised white center. It is driving me nuts because it flares up whenever I rub my skin on anything. It is also extremely itchy if I don’t take anti-histamines every day. The Urticaria (or hives) will go away after an hour or so if not irritated.

I have undergone skin tests and blood work to determine the cause. I am allergic to cats (in which I have little to no contact with), grass (but the symptoms persist even during winter in Canada when all the ground is covered in snow), Advil, and 4 types of outdoor molds. However I already knew I was allergic to this before the Urticaria started. I am not allergic to dust or any common foods I consume. The symptoms are not seasonal. I have also tried elimination diets which have not yielded any results.

In addition to this I have recently moved from eastern Canada to the southern United Stated and the symptoms have remained exactly the same despite a major change in the outdoor environment.

The doctors I've seen appear to be unable to provide any help or explanation for its cause and suggest it may just go away one day. Could anyone please suggest some possible causes or ways to help relieve the symptoms? It is embarrassing and is driving me insane.
Best Answer
1355118 tn?1298564879
Hi, another related condition you need to look into is Hereditary angioedema (HAE), which is a rare genetic disorder resulting from an inherited deficiency or dysfunction of the C1 inhibitor.

There are certain known triggering factors like certtain medication, stress, excitement, cold exposure, prolonged sitting or standing, and ingestion of certain foods. You need to continue identifying this triggering factor and avoid the further exposure. C4 and C1 inhibitor antigenic levels are recommended as initial screening tests in the patient.

Treatment options available for the acute attack are C1-inhibitor [C1 esterase inhibitor replacement protein (C1INHRP), Plasma and Antifibrinolytics against prescription.
I suggest you to consult immunologist for further evaluation. Take care and regards.
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Avatar universal

you are not the first one who developed dermographism during studies, in fact my doctot got it (and still has it) during her med school. a friend of mine also had it during exams at the university. It lasted less than a year for him, he quit university.

I know you can't rule out stress from your life completely, and especially when you are a student. But you can change your approach towards stress. By your message alone, I sense you are an anxious and stressful person. Being aware of this is a first major step.

I do want to give you some hope. I am 39 yo, developed dermographism about 6 months ago and could not survive a day without 2 to 3 pills antihistaminica per day. I didn't care so much about the marks on my skin, they always go away, but the constant itchiness of my skin was my worst trouble. I am off the pills since last Saturday and I don't need them anymore, we are now 5 days further and I still get the marks here and there (only if skin is rubbed) but the itchiness has reduced significantly, I only feel some soft tingling here and there, mostly on my scalp or face. It is like a miracle, but I am still careful about it, still can't believe it somehow I am living already 5 days without pills and feeling ok.

You know what changed for my 5 days ago: last Friday
- I finally accepted that I am HIV- after 6 months of worrying and 8 tests
- I have decided to quit my job as this was a very stress one for the last 3 years

What a coincidence, isn't it...

the mind is very powerful...

good luck,

Helpful - 1
Can we talk via pp
Avatar universal
Finally I found a cure for Urticaria

Before taking everyone through my journey, I would like to mention that I am in no way associated with the medical field or endorse any product or doctor. This is just my personal experience which I am penning down so that others who are facing this irritating body condition might benefit from it.

Urticaria is a medical condition or can also be referred to as a disease where in the body become hyper allergic to something (could be food, environment etc) and then start producing histamine in order to protect the body from what it perceives as a threat. The result of it is that skin starts to have lesions and there is itching in the body. Based on the severity of this the itching could be less or more.

For most of the people this can occur sometime in their lifetime but gets relieved in a week or so through antihistamines but for some this condition can become chronic and last for several years. In my case it has already been 13+ years.

This started with me just like that one day without any known trigger and then just didn’t go away. Urticaria is one such condition which severely affects quality of life as every other day you need to pop in an antihistamine pill which after a point of time becomes psychologically taxing. You start believing that this will never go away and also the thought that you might have something else also looms around.

When it all started I referred to a dermatologist who gave me antihistamine pills for a week. This went on for some weeks, each time when I used to leave medicine the condition used to come back. Needless to say I changed doctors in the hope that someone can give me the right medicine and it will go away. As more and more time passed I became impatient and also irritated with the fact that the condition is not going away and doctors don't have much to do about it. Just to add that I was in Delhi, so had access to decent medical expertise. I would not name any hospital or doctor because the intent of this post is not to defame anyone.

A year passed by with this routine and then I tried a doctor who was an expert in allergies. He recommended me to have omalizumab which is sold under brand name Xolair in India trademarked by Novartis. These are highly expensive injections where one dose cost you about 50k and I had to take 8 such doses. While I spent all this money in the hope that I will very soon be out of it but to my utmost surprise there was no improvement. Later the doctor told me that this drug is effective only in 50% of cases. Again I have nothing against this drug or company, it's just that I didn’t get any result out of it.

I spent around 6-8 months in complete treatment and came out like a lost warrior thinking again that this can’t be treated and I have to live with this for my whole life. Fast forward some more years in my life I again thought to give a fight with alternative medicine therapies like ayurveda and homeopathy. Needless to say again that I consulted some of the top most reputed institutions who would have access to some of the best panels of doctors. But I didn’t get any result, there was no improvement in my condition even after having treatment for months.

Lot of times I went on the internet to search if people have found something which has helped them and tried a lot of things like gluten free diet, lactose free diet etc. but nothing helped. I also had a skin allergy test with around 50 categories of allergens and the result had so many positives that if you avoid that many foods, you can hardly live. One by one I used to remove one of them from my diet and see the result but nothing worked. Some doctors also prescribed neurological medicines saying it's more related to the level of brain chemicals (hormones). I had no option but to believe in them and take the course of medication.

At one point I met so many doctors and read so much about it that I thought I could write a mini thesis on this subject. Fast forward 13 years, while I have already given any hope of getting out of it, someone suggested to me Naturopathy, since this was one category which I haven’t tried till now so I thought let's give it a try. I went to a renowned naturopathy institute and got admitted there for 10 days. Everyone in the hospital was above 60 and I was feeling like the odd one out but since I knew how much I have gone through I stayed put with all my inner strength and power. I was given a good massage for 10 days and some other therapies and I felt slightly better (around 5%). While that 5% was insignificant, it gave me hope again. They gave me an oil (details at the end) which they said you should apply daily and leave for around 15-20 mins. I came back to my place and started using the same religiously everyday. With 15 days of usage I could see some improvement and with every passing week I started getting more and more improvement. This was just around 3-4 months back and before that I used to take an antihistamine once in 2 days and now it's like once in 10 days. And the condition is getting better so I believe that I will be out of it within 6 months.

The reason why I am writing this is that for the past 13 years I have done a lot of research on this subject but I haven’t found a sureshot medicine for it across the globe. According to my research, a lot of people have been carrying this condition for decades and have finally given up hope. I don’t know whether it would benefit each and everyone who would use it but would surely recommend people to try it as even if it doesn’t give any benefit it would not cause any side effects as nothing is going inside the body.

So, finally the name of the sanjeevani booti of urticaria, its Eladi oil. It is available in two variants, Eladi oil which has sesame oil base, and eladi keram oil which has coconut oil base. For those who are living in hot conditions use eladi keram and for those who are living in cold conditions use eladi oil. I myself have been using eladi oil for the last 3-4  months. As far as the brand is concerned I have used two brands, Arya Vaidyasala from kotakkal ayurveda and one from vaidyaratnam company. Both of them were effective and so I believe you can go for any. One bottle costs about 200 Rs or 3 USD in India and it would last for around 10 days. These are also available online.

The purpose of this post is to be able to help people and not to endorse any therapy, treatment, medicine or doctor.
Note: Try a small amount of oil the first day in hands or legs and just to check out of no reactions.

My Coordinates
Arpan Agrawal
India, Delhi
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Avatar universal
Stress and anxiety seem to be contributing factors, but i hope there is another cause that i can eliminate from my life. As i am still a student i am faced with stress almost everyday in the form of assignments, tests and exams. These stress factors will continue for at least another 2 years, since I'm in a six year program.

I also try to avoid situations which may rub or irritate my skin as physical contact seems to bring out the hives.

Let me know if you find anything that could help out,

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Avatar universal
Hi Dave,

alcohol also has a symptoms reducing effect on my dermographism. also the more sedating (Atarax), calming (rupatall) anti-histamines, and even anxiety pills like xanax (i tested this for a while to confirm my theory)...so, my theory is that alochol is of course effective because it CALMS down the nervous system.
So the basic factors to look at is STRESS & ANXIETY.
RELAXATION is the best way to control the symptoms, either by therapies, pills or changing your life to reduce stress and anxiety.

Believe me, I have done a lot of research on this, and I have been tested in and out for underlying conditions, nothing was found.

Good luck mate,
I know how it feels.
Helpful - 0
1355118 tn?1298564879
Hi, omalizumab is a drug approved for bronchial asthma but still in approval for urticaria and other allergic manifestations. This is given subcutaneously. This will inhibit the IgE antibody and hence further allergic reaction. Take care.
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Avatar universal
What kind of therapy is anti-lgE antibody (Omalizumab).  
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1355118 tn?1298564879
Hi, another newer therapy you can look into is anti-IgE antibody (Omalizumab), this may help. Discuss with your doctors for options. Take care and regards.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Thanks, thats another cause to look into.

I would also like to add that the only times the symptoms seems to go away is if i'm sleeping or drinking alcohol. Typically after drinking around 4 beer or more the symptoms seem to disappear and don't reappear until the next morning. Could this indicate something?
Helpful - 0
681148 tn?1437661591
Have you been tested for auto-immune illneses?  I have a neighbor who was told that she has Urticaria and hers was actually auto-immune.  A few years ago she had the flare up.  She is a walking time bomb, because with her, she could suddenly have another flare up and not know what sets it off for her either.  Like you, she has just a handful of allergies.  It was her allergist that tested her for the auto-immune Urticaria.  Your issues sound similar.

Sorry, but I only know of a possible cause to investigate, not symptom relief.  Immune support might help, like testing your vitamin D and making sure it's adequate.  Severe vitamin D deficiency can indicate auto-immune issues.  Boosting it might help, because it's like the most critical part of the immune system.  The RDA amount of magnesium is a necessary mineral to take with the vitamin D to fully benefit from both.  The RDA of vitamin D is insufficient, especially if you have auto-immune issues.

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