Chronic Hives – Causes and Symptoms of Chronic Hives

Chronic Hives also called urticaria are patches of red, raised or itchy, white wheals of different sizes that keeps appearing and disappearing. Most of the symptoms related to hives, disappear within few weeks or less. In some cases, they are long term problems. Chronic hives are those that last for more than six weeks, but recur frequently. In most of the cases, the cause is not identified and some may be related to certain diseases to any autoimmune disorders like thyroid disease or lupus.

Chronic hives are an inflammation of the skin which occurs when some cells release histamines and some other chemicals into the blood stream, which causes the blood vessels to leak. The cause of this disease is not known and the triggers can be very difficult to understand.This is also caused by autoimmune disorder and can be linked to other health problems like lupus or thyroid diseases.

In very few cases, reaction to food, medication, insects, infection and parasites are identified as the cause for chronic hives.  In some of the case, the exact cause of chronic hives is not identified. Heat, pressure, sunlight, cold and other environmental triggers can complicate chronic hives. Non-steroidal antiinflammatory drugs can worsen chronic hives.

Signs and Symptoms
The signs and symptoms include:

  • They usually appear as small and round wheals, large patches or rings and may change shape
  • This is surrounded by a red flare and causes itching
  • This usually occur in batches and appears on the face or the extremities
  • This hives can last from 30 minutes to 36 hours.

Some of the patients suffering from this disorder also have angioedema. The signs and symptoms include swelling of the skin that occurs around the eyes and lips, feet, genitalia and inside the throat. Angioedema does not itch as chronic hives. These symptoms can come and go, without a proper trigger. They can sometimes be a cause of any underlying condition.

When to consult your doctor
Consult your doctor, if you suffer from:

  • Severe hives
  • Hives that keep appearing for more than a couple of days
  • Hives that do not respond to treatment.

Seek emergency care if you:

  • Feel your throat is swelling
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Feel lightheaded

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