March 28, 2013


Hives are itchy red welts that develop as a result of reactions to foods and other substances. It is more commonly known as utricaria. Certain medications can also cause hives. Patients without allergies can develop hives often being stung by an insect or touching certain plants (poison oak or poison ivy). Hives are usually accompanied with other symptoms including swelling of other parts of the body. Food allergies as well can provoke swelling of the lips and mouth.

Hives can be triggered by many things, including:

  • Medications (aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, narcotic painkillers, or antibiotics).
  • Infections with viruses, bacteria, or fungi.
  • Environmental allergies such as insect bites, pollen, mold, or animal dander.
  • Physical exposures such as heat, cold, water, sunlight, or pressure.
  • Medical conditions such as gland diseases, blood diseases, or cancer.
  • Food allergies such as from strawberries, eggs, nuts, or shellfish.
  • Stress.

In up to 90% of outbreaks of hives, a trigger is never found despite extensive testing; these cases are referred to as idiopathic urticaria. In cases of idiopathic urticaria outbreaks, hives are most likely caused by a reaction from the person’s own immune system (autoimmune reaction).If hives are accompanied by swelling of the throat and difficulty breathing, speaking or swallowing, they could signal anaphylaxis, a potentially fatal medical emergency.

Hives and other allergic hypersensitivities can be easily managed on a properly prescribed treatment plan which includes several diet and lifestyle changes. In the majority of cases treatment is quick and effective as the reaction can be treated acutely. More about homoepathy…

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