These areas may develop a swelling that is frightening in appearance, but usually goes away in less than 24 hours. In many cases, a single attack of hives is due to an infection or virus and these go away within a few days to a few weeks.Some people get repeated attacks that occur as an allergic reaction to a variety of things (foods, most commonly nuts, chocolate, fish, tomatoes, eggs, fresh berries and milk, insect stings, and medications).Some people react to anything that makes them hot or sweaty with hives.This can be sunlight, exercise, hot baths, blushing or anger.Certain people can develop recurrent hives from sunlight, cold, pressure, vibration or exercise. If hives develop from scratching or firmly rubbing the skin it is called dermatographism.
Some patients with chronic hives and elevated anti-thyroid antibodies in the blood improve when given thyroid supplement even if the thyroid function is normal.
Some have autoimmune thyroid disease, vitiligo, swollen joints, or certain abnormalities in the blood (especially the ANA test).
A new treatment has recently emerged for autoimmune urticaria.
In the overwhelming majority of cases it is not "something" causing the chronic hives, it is "nothing." That is, in about 95% of chronic hives cases, the hives are "idiopathic" (a medical term that means there is no discernible cause).
Because of those 5% of cases with a cause, it is worthwhile to see a physician to determine if any underlying disease is present (e.g.
In about half of patients with chronic idiopathic hives, the explanation is that body's immune system is, in a sense, overactive. The immune system is attacking the normal tissues of the body and causing hives as a result.