Chronic Hives question



  • Rays_Wife
    Rays_Wife Posts: 1,173 Member
    My son suffered from chronic hives for months. We went to an ENT allergist and they allergy tested him for everything (food + environmental). They found he had a moderate allergy to milk that was causing his break outs. Since we cut back on his milk intake by 75% he hasn't had one outbreak (going on 6 months now). He used to get a bad hive break out once a week.

    Have a full allergy testing done - blood test as well as the skin testing they do. You shouldn't just have to "live with it". A good doctor can find what the cause is and come up with a treatment/prevention plan. It could be as simple as eliminating one thing, or coming in once or twice a week for a shot, Good luck!
  • CarrieCans
    CarrieCans Posts: 381 Member
    I've gotten hives all of my life. Sometimes it's so bad i will end up with welts that look like someone beat me with a whip. Other times i just get a raised rash, especially anywhere i am tattood. If i leave them alone and don't let fabric rub they can go away pretty quick.

    As a kid i got them a LOT! I would often end up in the emergency room with unexplained rashes and difficulty breathing. Then it was hard to determine what the cause was because i went everywhere and did everything.

    I get them less as i get older. The hives i get still are usually anxiety related. Sometimes i get them from dust. I don't get them often so i don't always realize right away that the reason my arms are covered in welts is because i moved a dusty box in the basement. Now that it's Christmas time i have to deal with trees. Real trees make me break out all over my arms and i have to be careful not to touch any part of the tree with my arms, hands aren't as sensitive. Walks in the woods require long sleeves. I even have to be careful with a fake tree. It gets a shower in the tub every year to remove all dust because that's almost as bad as a real tree. And then there's dusty mold. If i clean out a basement with mold, i itch for days.

    Even though i see these patterns, my Dr still calls them "unexplained" because they are too random. Benadryl is a good friend of mine.
  • smantha32
    smantha32 Posts: 6,993 Member
    Psychgrrl wrote: »
    I have topical reactions all the time (never internal like breathing issues). I wash off the affected area and if that doesn't work, I apply hydro-cortisone cream, if that doesn't work, I take an antihistamine (benadryl).

    My main issues are chemicals in make-up, skin care, hair care and household products. I use biodegradable laundry detergent, natural cleaners, mineral make-up and am very, very careful about hair care products. Most hair sprays pretty much coat me in hives. :neutral_face: Most of the issues I have now occur when I'm outside my home and around other people.

    I'm experiencing this now, and I can't figure out what's doing it.
    cortisone cream works a little bit but not enough. I'm just about to try benadryl. Good to know I'm thinking along the right lines. :)
  • 42carrots
    42carrots Posts: 98 Member
    edited December 2014
    About 10 years ago I had chronic hives for about an entire year. Got them all the time to the point where they had a pretty major impact on my life, I was in university at the time. It was so strange, I would get pretty bad bouts of them on a daily basis, one minute I would be fine, then the next I'd have hives all over most of my body, sometimes with my lips and eyelids swelling as well, then a few minutes or a half hour later they'd disappear again without a trace. I went to a few doctors including a dermatologist and an allergy specialist, neither of which was particularly helpful. The allergy specialist actually told me that something like 80% of the time they're not able to figure out why someone gets chronic hives, but once it goes away it usually never comes back. After months of maxing out on Benedryl and then eventually taking some type of steroid (I forget what it was called) I did finally stop getting them, and have never had the again. I know that's probably a mixture of reassuring and not so much, but hopefully yours resolve themselves soon, good luck!

    I should add that while lots of people here have some good advice for troubleshooting a source, I'm pretty sure that I didn't implement any significant diet or lifestyle changes at the time as nothing was really recommended, so there was no magic bullet solution for me, they just...went away.
  • daily doses of reatcine 20mg and zantac 150 mg keep mine under control..miss a day and within 36 hours I am covered head to toe once again. No allergies to be found,showing elevated thyroid antibodies. I am told it's an autoimmune disease without any explanation and more than likely responsible for the increase in weight in the past few months since the hives first appeared. I intend on figuring it out...good luck everyone
  • Psychgrrl
    Psychgrrl Posts: 3,167 Member
    smantha32 wrote: »
    I'm experiencing this now, and I can't figure out what's doing it.
    cortisone cream works a little bit but not enough. I'm just about to try benadryl. Good to know I'm thinking along the right lines. :)

    The one thing about bennadryl is that it is a potent sleep aid. It's the snoozy ingredient in Nyquil. It has little effect on me.
  • dlemond1128
    dlemond1128 Posts: 25 Member
    Chronic hives can be a symptom of thyroid or hormonal issues. My stepdaughter is dealing with chronic hives and they believe it is related to some hormonal issues. See and endocrinologist and have your levels checked.
  • EmilyJackCO
    EmilyJackCO Posts: 621 Member
    Chronic hives can be a symptom of anxiety. I wouldn't be surprised if your "terrible eating" and "alcohol abuse" are causing you a great deal of anxiety.

    All of this. A few years ago, I broke out in head to toe hives for 3 months, so severe that I couldn't wear normal clothes. I couldn't wear anything but cotton. Round after round of antihistamines and prednisone and they kept coming back. \

    I ended up seeing an allergist (who is a godsend)... my cortisol levels in my blood were so high they were off the charts. She put me on hydroxysine and lexapro for a few months, and they went away. I quit taking them both and that's when the anxiety/panic attacks started. When I got really stressed, the hives would come back. So, I take lexapro daily to help control the anxiety... but it's the counseling that really helped.

    If you're so stressed out that you're eating poorly and drinking a lot - I'd say start there.

  • Some_Watery_Tart
    Some_Watery_Tart Posts: 2,250 Member
    My husband had "chronic hives" for almost 2 years (along with mood swings, fatigue, and some other issues) before his specialist specialist finally ordered a vitamin D test. They hadn't thought of it before because he works outside, but sure enough, extremely low vit D levels. He's on a supplement--no more breakouts.
  • CorlissaEats
    CorlissaEats Posts: 493 Member
    Allergists test for IgE reactions but you can also have IgG reactions to things. IgG allergy tests look for reactions that happen between 2hrs to 48 hrs later, while IgE tests look for reactions within 2 hrs of contact. I have many IgG allergies, also called food sensitivities. For example, I consume milk and 4-6hrs later my mouth is unbearably itchy and I have a headache and seasonal allergy symptoms.

    I had to see a Naturopathic Doctor in order to get the test, they aren't often offered by regular physicians. You could very legitimately not have any allergies show up on tests but still get hives due to allergic reactions. You may want to find a doctor or Naturopath in your area that offers the ELISA test.
  • hurricaneemly
    hurricaneemly Posts: 23 Member
    Chronic hives can be a symptom of anxiety.

    This is true. I suffer from chronic hives, as well. Part of it is genetic (mother, grandmother, great grandmother...) and the other part is anxiety/stress related. I take Lexapro daily and Zyrtec at night and it makes it so that I don't have such bad attacks. Even with this, I still get hives daily. It's only noticeable to me when I'm in a highly stressful or emotional situation. Alcohol and poor diet tend to make matters worse.

    There's no harm in working on your diet and alcohol consumption and it's entirely possible that your doc's a quack, but it's worth considering that there's an underlying cause besides an allergy.

    Good luck!
  • jesslintch
    jesslintch Posts: 63 Member
    I had hives of an unknown origin for several months a few years ago. My regular doctor and an allergist could not identify ANYTHING that could be causing it. I mentioned it in a side conversation with my chiropractor. He said, "Oh, it's your liver." He recommended Standard Processing. I followed it for a month and have not had problems since.