Hives appear on your skin as itchy welts. They’re temporary and often the result of an allergic reaction, but are irritating and sometimes painful. At Clear Allergy in Culver City, California, Katie Marks-Cogan, MD, FACAAI, and Raffi Tachdjian, MD, MPH, FAAAAI, offer therapies to help people manage the symptoms of hives and prevent them from recurring. Make an appointment with these skilled allergists by calling the office or using the online booking agent.
Hives can appear anywhere on your body, and range in size from tiny pinpoints to large swatches of skin. Sometimes the welts merge to create larger patches of itchy, swollen skin.
Hives may last about 24 hours, but can come in waves where they recede, then reappear, so it seems like they last for several days. Chronic hives that last for longer can also occur. When hives fade, they usually leave no signs behind and the skin returns to normal.
Also known as urticaria, hives can show up anywhere, including your face, neck, trunk, arms and legs. Hives that develop on the eyelids and lips can have severe side effects and should be addressed right away.
Hives have many causes, including allergic reactions to medicines, pollen, animals, or foods. Your immune system reacts to a trigger and hives develop.
You may also develop hives due to:
Hives usually appear as slight skin swelling that’s pinkish or reddish in color. They’re itchy and can sometimes sting and cause pain. You may get just one welt, or you may develop several that group and connect together. Hives may appear in one section of your body and disappear after 24 hours only to develop somewhere else later.
To determine the cause of your hives, Dr. Marks-Cogan and Dr. Tachdjian may request a blood test or an allergy skin test before deciding on a treatment. These tests can identify potential allergens that are causing your condition.
Skin testing can also rule out allergy-based hives, and the doctors can review your medical history and lifestyle to determine what may be causing recurrent hives.
Initially, the doctors may recommend over-the-counter antihistamines or prescription corticosteroids to relieve your symptoms. They also offer comprehensive guidance for caring for your skin at home to relieve itching and protect your skin from damage caused by scratching.
If chronic hives are affecting your skin’s health, contact the experienced medical team at Clear Allergy by phone or online to schedule a consultation.