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Cold Contact Urticaria

Cold Contact Urticaria Causes

Most causes of hives are idiopathic. However, there are some rare diseases that lead to cold hives, and it is helpful to test these conditions for exact causes.

Cold Contact Urticaria Definition

Cold contact urticaria is defined as a long-term or chronic condition in which the skin forms hives that become very itchy and red when exposed to cold. The hives are generated through rapid histamine release caused by eosinophils and IgE antibodies in response to cold stimulus. Rapid cooling from evaporation after an individual gets out from the swimming pool may trigger the condition even during warm days.

Cold Contact Urticaria Diagnosis

Generally an allergist obtains the diagnosis of cold contact urticaria through performing cold test.

Cold Contact Urticaria Symptoms and Signs

Cold contact urticaria is manifested by redness, swelling, and itchiness of skin within a few minutes after being exposed to cold stimulus. Burning sensation can be one prominent feature. Swelling is contained to body parts that have come in contact with cold stimulus. Symptoms become worse when the exposed region is warmed. Other symptoms include swelling of hand when holding cold objects, lip swelling when eating a cold food, as well as generalized symptoms of headache, flushing, abdominal pain, and fainting in areas that are largely affected.

Cold Contact Urticaria Treatment

Apparently, the most effective thing to do is staying warm. Allergy medications can be taken to get rid or prevent hives. Cold hives are potentially serious, sometimes even fatal in a series of reactions. It is important to carry injectable type of epinephrine to use in systematic reaction.

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