Hives! - Fort Worth,TX

Updated on January 02, 2013
M.K. asks from Spring, TX
9 answers

I've been struggling with hives for 3 weeks now and am so frustrated. The only thing that I can perceive that I did differently was that I ate scallops the night before this started. I checked with the restaurant and they came from New Bedford, MA and were wild-caught. That was dinner, the next morning I woke up to hives on my stomach, butt, and the back of my legs. I didn't get better after a week, so I saw my allergist (I'm allergic to molds, dust mites, and some pollen and was going to start allergy shots). She gave me a steroid Medrol dosepak which I took along with Zyrtec once a day. The first day I didn't take steroids was the worst day, I had hives from ankle to forehead, my face and especially lips were swollen. So, they put me on straight Prednisone, Zyrtec and Zantac twice a day. That controlled the hives completely, but I started tapering off the Prednisone and they're coming back. They're qute manageable right now, but I'm worried that as I continue to go off the steroids they'll get worse.

The doctor says that it's unlikely to be a shellfish allergy since I would be better by now. But, I wonder if I am allergic to shellfish (test to be done in 2 days due to the holiday) and that set off the hives which now has to run its course. But, they can't tell me what is a normal course. They don't seem to know much at all.

Does anyone have experience with hives? I'm desperate for some answers.

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So What Happened?

It's been 25 days now and I'm doing better. I'm a few days away from being off Prednisone and as I taper off the steroid, I am seeing more hives, but they're manageable. Generally several in the mornng, and a couple in the evening. I'm still taking 10mg Zyrtec and 150mg Zantac every 12 hours, so I'm hoping that keeps things under control. Doctor thinks it's a viral case of hives, apprarently that's really common and my kids and husband have been sick practically all month. I looked and a typical duration of viral hives is 4 weeks, so I'm hoping I'm nearly out of it.


It's now been 10 weeks with no relief. I can get rid of the hives if I take Prednisone, but that's not something I can (or want to) take long term. I'm trying to find the right cocktail of least-damaging drugs in order to suppress the hives while I wait for them to go away. This has been so hard! Being covered head to toe with itchy hives and never knowing what's going to make them worse or make my face swell up is something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. I've not had a lot of medical problems in the past, so all this drug taking and general negative impact to my quality of life is really rough.
I did a full food allergy panel done (had already done a scratch test for the other allergens) and I'm not allergic to any food. I started eating really really well, got back into yoga, started daily relaxation exercises, and started taking St John's Wort to improve my mood. Wish me luck!

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answers from Jacksonville on

My mom gets hives when she becomes allergic to something. At one time she had hives for 3 years. After seeing many specialists, her doctor changed a medication that she had been on for several years and the hives went away. She had become allergic to it.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Houston on

you can develop allergies at anytime in life, so you may have suddenly become allergic to something you are exposed to in your everyday life. just a thought? good luck:)

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Appleton on

My Mom, myself, one of my kids and grandkids have all suffered with hives. The only thing that ever worked was Benedryl. Of course then you spend all day and night sleeping because the Benedryl simply knocks us out.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Wausau on

You should probably have a whole allergy panel done. You're probably allergic to something new, and something you're in contact with frequently.

One of my friends, in adulthood, developed a dairy allergy. Not lactose intolerant, an allergy that came with hives even if it was a trace amount. She carries an epipen and has to be diligent about label reading. So many "non-dairy" foods contain dairy products.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

This isn't like any reaction to anything I have ever seen. For sure you need to see a dermatologist to see if this is something else besides hives. My friend got bitten by a spider and almost died. She turned red and nasty all over for months and months. The skin doc told her it was psoriasis from a body injury, I can't remember what specifically it was called but it's basically the bodies reaction to an injury and it tells the body to react, even after the threat is gone. She finally got rid of it after a year or so and only has a patch or two of it on her whole body. But for that whole year she didn't go out of her house without being fully covered to hide her skin.

I would go to different docs until one figured out what this actually was. If allergy meds are not effecting it and stopping it completely and it "is" an allergy then it is one you are in constant contact with, like laundry soap or fabric softener. My granddaughter suddenly started reacting to Gain Fabric softener so I switched back, after years of using Gain to Downy. She hasn't had hives since.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

I have an in law that has "Urticaria."
But I don't know if your hives are like this, since your hives does not seem to be "welts."

Or try Google Search "types of hives."

Make sure, any swelling you get does not get dangerous. ie: in your throat etc.

Then, I have a friend, that since last year, has developed hives in reaction to MANY types of foods. Which previously, she could eat. And it has been ongoing for the past 2 years now. She got allergy tested for so many things and apparently, now, she reacts to so many foods which never bothered her before. Her hives, are not debilitating however. Not like my in-law that has chronic Urticaria.

In any case, hives can be temporary or not. And can be caused by anything.

If your symptoms gets worse, I would go to the ER.



answers from Portland on

Both my granddaughter and I get hives. Benedryl has always knocked them out. After a couple of doses the hives are gone.

I suggest that your hives are caused by something to which you're exposed everyday. We can develop allergies to things which we weren't allergic to previously. I'd try changing everyday things such as your soap or lotion, detergent. And if you're eating something everyday, try not eating it at all.

It is extremely unlikely that the shellfish is still causing the hives. They are long gone from your system. Your body has digested them and eliminated all traces of the shell fish. The shell fish are no longer in your body and cannot be causing hives.



answers from Austin on

You might need to get a full workup done.

I am one of the lucky people who gets "progressive contact allergies." Which means, the allergic reaction begins immediately (though maybe only a rash or something mild) when I make contact with whatever it is, and reaches the peak of hives and welts five days later, and then gradually subsides over the course of about a week. (Though itchy! I have to have heavy duty prescription allergy meds, and still sleep with socks on my hands so I don't scratch in my sleep!) I've never gotten a workup done, since it's only occasional, but because of the progressive nature of my allergies, I will never know what it is without complete testing. (Can YOU remember EVERYTHING you came into contact with five days ago?)

This sounds like it could be both to me - something you come into contact with fairly often, but is also progressive, which would account for the variations in intensity that you seem to be experiencing, if I'm reading this right. Is there a pattern? Maybe, starting on the downhill side of the reaction, but then getting re-exposed, just in time to hit the peak several days later, before the previous reaction has finished going away. All over suggests food or something you use all over - Lotion. Detergent. Spray tanner. Shampoo running down after you wash your hair.

Hope you feel better quick.



answers from Chicago on

I had hives during the last trimester of my second and third pregnancy. I took the steroid pills during the 2nd pregnancy, but I waited till after the birth of the third baby to take the steroids pills. The hives came back with a vengeance after the birth of the second baby and over the next two years would come back out of no where. Benadryl never did anything for me. I would itch for days and just waited for them to go away. I had welts and swelling everywhere. If I itched my lip, it would start to swell. If I did dishes, my hands would itch for the next hour. So basically I really tired to not itch. The steroid pills really helped the last time. I have only had a couple small hives in the last 2 years.
My middle child has broken out in hives twice in the last couple months. I give him benadryl and help keep him from itching. They go away in a couple days.
I'm guessing your case may be an allergic reaction or very sensitive skin. I do hope your doctor finds an answer. Hives are not fun! I get all itchy just thinking about it.

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