#urticariaday2014 International Urticaria Day – find out more about hives and Urticaria to help us promote awareness

Wednesday October 1st , next week, sees International Urticaria Day. So we thought it would be a good opportunity to raise awareness of the condition here at PatientTalk.Org.

More and more people react to everyday situations with an itchy rash and wheals (swelling on the skin). This condition is called hives or urticaria.

International Urticaria Day was created by UNEV (the Urticaria Network e.V.) and the DAAB e.V., two organizations both based Germany. Both organisations aim to improve conditions for people with urticaria and other allergies. The purpose of International Urticaria Day is to raise awareness of this debilitating disease. Educational events for healthcare professionals, people with urticaria , the media and the public will be taking place in Germany and throughout the globe . To obtain more information about local events and to show support, visit www.urticariaday.org and follow the chat on Twitter #urticariaday2014. The Twitter handle is @urticariaday so please follow for more information.

In fact, 1 in 4 people is affected by urticaria. Symptoms are typically present for a few days or weeks –this is called acute urticaria. However, the disease lasts longer in many individuals. In Germany alone, over 1% of the population suffer from chronic urticaria. Which is a very high prevalence. It should be noted that women are affected twice as often as men and the incidence in children requires more research. In some cases it may well be an allergic reaction.

The diagnosis and treatment of chronic urticaria is tough . Only some varieties of urticaria have a known cause. These often takes months to identify and treat appropriately. Regardless of the type of urticaria a person may have, the signs and symptoms are the same – namely itching, redness, hives and/or swelling of the skin (angioedema). Effective treatments are now available more are being investigated. Urticaria is, typically, treated by dermatologists and there are specialized centers that cater of those with severe forms of the disease.

If you have or currently suffer from urticaria it would be great to hear from you please feel free to share your story in the comments section below.

In particular we are interested in the following questions:-
a) What were you earliest symptoms of urticaria?
b) How long did they last for?
c) What treatments for urticaria did you receive? How effective were these treatments?
d) How easy was it to get diagnosed with urticaria?
e) What one bit of advice would you give to somebody who has just been diagnosed with urticaria?

Thanks very much in advance!