Urticaria can be a surprisingly common condition that may be seen initially in a pharmacy. The condition is considered to have a multifactorial causation and may occur as an acute or chronic form, and patients may be affected by more than one type. Urticaria impacts significantly on patients' quality of life, especially when chronic, and often impacts on sleep. Initial management is reassurance that urticaria is rarely life threatening and can be managed by identifying the cause, if possible, and avoiding or minimising exposure. Second generation (lesser sedating antihistamines) are then recommended for control of symptoms with additional options such as corticosteroids in short courses to achieve additional control, under the management of a specialist medical practitioner. Some sub-types such as 'cold urticaria' may be more likely to be life threatening and individuals affected may also be prescribed an adrenaline auto-injector. There are opportunities for pharmacists and their staff to assist individuals who are affected by urticaria. A resource list and references are available on request.
|Number of pages||4|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 2011|