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Posted By : peak - 6/20/2009 1:20 PM
A little over three weeks ago, my wife had a bad breakout of hives that started just as she was finishing a prescription (10 days worth) of Amoxicillin. She stopped the Amoxicillin that day and figured that she was having an allergic reaction to the medication. The hives continued for a few days so she visited her PCP. He gave her a prescription for prednisone and told her to take Clariton each day. Unfortunately, the hives didn't improve and a couple of days later they were so bad, and her face was so swollen, she had to take a trip to the ER. The doctors immediately gave her an IV and had to give her an adrenaline shot because her face and throat were so swollen. They also continued to give her prednisone along with allegra, benadryl, and pepcid. They assumed she had an allergic reaction to the amoxicillin and it was no longer in her system. It had been more than a week off the amoxicillin before she even entered the hospital.
After a couple of days in the hospital, the hives and swelling went completely away. She was dismissed from the hospital about 11:30am. At home that evening about 9-10 hours later, the hives started to return and all the medication (prednisone, allegra, benadryl, and pepcid) she was continuing to take, didn't stop the hives. She visited with her PCP earlier this week for a allergist refferal (darn HMO) and put her on Atarax instead of the Benardryl for the meantime. Again, no change. Hives were just as bad as ever, if not worse.
It has been over a week since her hospital stay and she has had severe hives (no dema though) every single day. They start around 8-9pm and continue to worsen through the night. they begin to fade through the day and begin new patches at night. Antihistamines and the steroids don't seem to be helping at all. They are actually just making her feel really terrible.  
Obviously, our next step is to get to the allergist. I just wanted to see if anyone else has had something like this or know someone who has had such a bad case of urticaria that steroids and antihistamines didn't help. Also, why did she clear completely up at the hospital when she is taking the same drugs now? Would it have been the IVs? Would it be because she was removed from the allergen? Does this sound more like a disease (thyroid, autoimmune, etc) than an actual allergy?
I have read at least a 100 websites on Urticaria and I am still just left really confused and frustrated. I love my wife and I am going crazy seeing her go through this.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Posted By : Ides - 6/21/2009 2:40 PM
You didn't mention where on her body your wife is developing uticaria. That is often a clue as to the cause. Going to an allergist is really the necessary step in the diagnosis process. I suddenly developed an allergy to an unknown substance this winter. I didn't develop a rash but had severe breathing difficulties. My allergist ordered the necessary testing and got me on a course of medications that has finally gotten the problem under control. It took three months to find a medication regime that kept the problem at bay. It sounds like your wife has not yet had that right combo.
It is also possible that a cause of your wife's uticaria may never be found. There is an article that is quite good at explaining CIU [chronic idiopathic uticaria]. In the first paragraph of page 2, the article refers to "Table 1". Table 1 shows likely causes of uticaria based on where the wheals are located. This might help since you know where she is developing wheals.
Let us know what the allergist has to say.

Moderator Crohn's Disease  & Osteoarthritis Forums
CD, Ankylosing Spondylitis, lupus, small fiber peripheral neuropathy, avascular necrosis, peripheral artery disease, degenerative disc disease, asthma, severe allergy and a host of other medical problems.

Posted By : SmurfyShadow - 6/24/2009 6:49 PM
Strip down the house and sterilize it. Write everything she eats and drinks. See the allergist. Get PCP to prescribe EPI-PEN...if her face and throat swells again jab that into her thigh, rush her to a doctor/er.

Smurfy Shadow/Desirèe 
DX: Wegener's Disease, Migraines, Diabetese Type II, PCOS, Lactose Intolerant, Benign Heart Murmer, Depression, Asthma, Asperger's Syndrome, Necrotizing Gramultous Inflamation in eye, A.D.D., Acid Reflux, Tumor Behind the Eye, Carpal Tunnel, Fibromyolgia, Clasterphobic, Arthritis
Medications:  Tri Nessa, Percocet, Metformin, Prilosec, Protonix, Zantac, Advair, Cingulair, Albuterol, Calcium + Vitamin D, Pro-Air, Pepcid, Rolaids, Zofran, Compuzeen, Refresh Plus Eye Drops  PRN: Epi-Pen, Albuterol Nebulizer, Benedryl
Undergoing Radiation Taking Lorazepam (Ativan) on Radiation Days

Posted By : urticaria3 - 7/15/2009 10:42 PM
Writing to let you know about my frustrating experience with urticaria, in case it helps. I am a 28 year old female and I woke up last December with some welts on my back and experienced swelling in my joints and severe pain in my muscles along with mild to moderate urticaria for about a month. After taking a strong antibiotic thinking it might be lyme disease, I had severe urticaria and had to go on allegra, zyrtec, and ultimately prednisone to get it under control. These medicines did work, primarily the steroid, but you cannot stay on steroids because they cause lots of other problems. The urticaria turned into Delayed Pressure Urticaria for a while, which while very annoying, was manageable. I was/am no longer able to lift weights, run, etc. because anything that causes pressure on my skin, including a heavy purse, will cause terrible hives within hours. It has always been worse in the evening and better by morning--other than the hives that are caused by the pressure points of lying down.

I have been tested for a million things under the sun, and they ruled out lupus, cancer, hepatitis, and a bunch of other suspects. I have also been tested a few times for my thyroid which was normal although I am still suspicious on that because I have read hives can precede a thyroid problem by months and even years.

I'm not sure if it was a result of the high level of histamine or a possible cause, but by May I developed a strong sensitivity to many foods--making me wonder if this was a food allergy. I realized I had a problem with all of the GERD problem foods--citrus, tomato sauce, carbonated beverages,etc. I also developed painful strictures in my intestines that came and went intermittently. I went on a PPI (Proton Pump Inhibitor) for 15 days to help with this, and the hives stopped. Unfortunately, shortly after I stopped the PPI, I developed chronic hives all over my body all the time--still worse in the evening.

Why on earth did the hives stop when I controlled my stomach acid? I continued searching other avenues, not able to explain this, and was tested for airborne allergens, which were mild and definitely normal (Note: I never had many allergies growing up and never had a sensitive system like this. In fact I had never had hives in my life). I also started to read about Leaky Gut, particularly on the Environmental Illness website, and although most traditional health practitioners don't subscribe to this--everything it says makes sense. Essentially, that a breakdown in the gut wall/weakness, either from food allergen, antibiotics, or something else like h.pylori, you stop filtering things as well and more junk from our food gets into our body and bloodstream, settling in joints and raising histamine levels. (Also why rheumatoid arthritis is tied to diet)

I started taking L-Glutamine because it has been mentioned on various credible sites for it's power to heal the intestines, as well as pro-biotics, and omega 3's. I'm also taking daily Pepcid and claritin. Last week, for the first time in over six months, the hives began to subside. I am hopeful that this regimen, along with avoiding gluten and eggs, and drinking lots of water, will ultimately stop the hives.

No medical practitioner has thus far been able to help me in any way. I have been to derm, allergy/immun and endocrinology, and as mentioned, undergone many tests. I have yet to see a gastrointerologist, but plan on it soon. I wish your wife a speedier recovery than me and I understand her and your pain--I would never wish this on my worst enemy. The reason this illness is so awful is primarily because you can never stop thinking about it with the constant itching. I will update this site as I learn more.

Posted By : urticaria3 - 7/15/2009 10:48 PM
One further note, I have also had angioedema and swelling of my throat and tongue in conjunction with the urticaria--be sure to keep an epi-pen on hand in case your wife has anaphylaxis.

Posted By : couchtater - 7/16/2009 7:19 PM
I had an allergic reaction to Augmentin back in December. I had itchy hands on Friday night, Saturday they were 3 times worst, Sunday Night my top lip started swelling. All this time I was popping benadryl. Sunday Night I went to sleep with a slightly swollen top lip and woke up at three AM with severe facial edma. I looked like Anjeleno Jolene and Mic Jager all rolled into one. I was rushed to the ER barely able to speak due to my tongue starting to swell. I was there for two hours receiving IVs and shots. For almost a week I was in and out of the doctors office trying to get something to stop my hands from itching. I also had a strange, VERY itchy, red spotted rash all over my body. Finally a wonderful PA gave me something called Visterel (?). She said any stronger and it would need to be IV. I was on it for three weeks before I had total relief. If I was late taking it the rash came back with a vengence. She said it would take time for all the Augmentin to get out of my system. Maybe that's what's going on with your wife?

Posted By : Tim223 - 9/1/2009 11:47 AM
I have had some similar issues, and wanted to post my story to see if anyone else has had symptoms like i have, and if they got any answers, or maybe itll fit someone elses symptoms and at least let um know they aint alone.

This started back in early to mid june.

I have a chronic pain disorder due to a past surgery (Nerves all all messed up in my leg now) And i had just started taking a new pain medication, Lortab 7.5, 2 in the morn and 2 at night. No big deal, now generally with pain medicine i take it for 2 weeks and then off for a week or two and repeat in order to fend off any dependency that may be developing (Use to have a drug problem, and i don't want to go down that road again). Now the first month i took it, i took it for a solid month to let it build up in my system, so when i started to alternate, the weeks off the pain meds would not be horrific. Well as soon as i stopped the lortab, the next day i wasn't feeling too hot, and started to get bumps on my face and back that itched, i had never had hives before, so i had no clue what they where and simply ignored them and tried to stay out of the heat, cause i figured it was just a heat rash, the second day off the medicine, they got really bad all on my back and under my hair. It got me worried enough to goto the hospital, they gave me benedryl, prednisone, zrytec, and some other stomach medicine to no avail, and finally resorted to a Epinephrine shot, which did the trick and made me feel like i was going to have a heart attack haha, at least the nurse warned me so i didn't freak. Got out, and was given prednisone to take for the next 3 days, did this and took zrytec and i thought i just had a food allergy and that's what the hospital labeled it. The day i stopped the prednisone, the hives returned with a vengeance, the first time my face swole up extremely bad to the point my upper lip was touching my nose, this time thought they where on the back of my neck and going down my back and on my thighs, i started having problems swallowing and struggled to get air in and returned to the hospital, they did the same thing, except gave me prednisone, tagamet, and cyprohiptadine to take at home when the occurred again, this has gone on and on and on, except when im taking my lortab i have hives, but literally its only like 3 or 4 hives in a small area and that's it, as soon as i come off of it, the first day im off of it, it hits me hard, i take my medicine, pass out from drowsiness, and by morning they are fine, and then every day to every 2 or 3 days they return and i repeat the same things. I went to my PCP about them, he did a food test, and a test to look for Auto-Immune disorders, both came back totally fine in every way, the only thing that seemed odd was my Liver Enzyme levels where double normal, which is probably from all the heavy drug use i did back in the day and the life long use of pain medicine due to my leg. I have started to see a great allergy specialist/immunologist and he did some special blood test and told me to come back when i had hives, to get them re-done, same day i went for my original blood test i got hives and returned, he said my hives looked very odd, because instead of in patches i had some single little red hives all over my body, along with patches of hives. He gave me Xyzal and Claratin and told me it was obvious to him that the anit-histamine was doing nothing for them, in fact they where simply still progressing and becoming more defined, i still have not gotten my blood results, that's tomorrow, but im still courious if im alone in this issue or if others have had the same problems, my allergy specialist is worried it is Vasculitus and said he would know more once he saw my test results. Also i have in the past 3 weeks woken with my wrist and fingers locked up, taking hours to work them out enough to start my welding (I'm currently in college for welding technology). Also the other night my right foot swole up while sitting down, and after i got up and walked around it returned to normal, this is happened 3 or 4 times now, and if i take my neurontin it makes suppperrr bad, it makes me have burning pain in my shoulders and chest and throat, and hives extremely bad, obviously i discontinued use of the medicine.

Sorry for the massive wall of text, but maybe i can get a answer or at least feel like maybe im not alone in this, its aggravating and tormenting. Best of luck to all of you having issues, i understand very well it can be a emotional and financial strain when things arnt going well with your health.

Posted By : Nana Monster - 9/1/2009 4:04 PM
Hi Peak,
   Check out stinging nettles. I had some bad hives and this helped. Also, if you need a steroid, yucca root   is
a natural one.
         Nana Monster

Posted By : Still Hopeful - 9/1/2009 5:47 PM
I've been reading the various postings on uticaria and other hive related problems. No one seems able to find out what my problem is, but uticaria seems closest.

In 2006, I was teaching in London, and came down with what I thought was a bad case of dandruff. It itched like mad. I used all the horrible products to keep it under control, but it never went away.

Upon my return to the states, the itching and red spots slowly seemed to move to my skin. I was told by a dermatologist that it was psoriasis (because of the head problems) but that was absolutely wrong. She finally sent me to see an allergist who tested me broadly from environmental things to food to household objects, pets, etc. No allergies.

Meanwhile, with the dermatologist, the small spots, sometimes red, sometimes white, began to cover my arms, upper and lower, my back, my upper chest, and in lesser amounts the rest of my body. They itched like crazy, and I unconsciously scratched - I was very busy. Soon I was covered in scabs, and soon scars.

I was given allegra, hydorchorine something at night, then zyzal to replace allegra (after a fight with my insurance...). None were 100% effective. I had cutivate lotion for my body (a light steroid I believe) and a stronger steroid for my head (which I used on my body when I couldn't stand it anymore - it worked better). The steroids have made my skin so thin that I when I rub it to stop from scratching, it leaves tiny bloodblisters. I stopped using any lotions, creams, detergents, any products with perfume, etc. So I cleaned up all my household products and detergents which helped somewhat. I was miserable. Stress definitely made it worse. When I went to Belize this last summer for a month, I swam in salt water and got lots of sun everyday and it got so much better. I just put on the regular "clean" creams (CeraVe for me) and used the antihistamines, and it almost seemed to be gone! Being stressfree helped. But now at home I take salt water baths, and it helps somewhat as well. I am now back to "awful" again.

When I saw the allergist, he seemed to know a lot more, and immediately gave me prednisonce on a 9 day course. When I was taking 3 a day (for 3 days) it was relief at last! But after that, it all returned with a vengeance. After the allergy test gave us no info, he sent me back to a (different) dermatologist since it is probably systemic rather than from outside, so that is my next step. Meanwhile he has given me Doxepin cream and tablets to help the itching and the stress. We'll see how it works.

However, along the way, I did find a product that really helps the itching without heavy drugs (most of the time...). It is called "Derm Essentials) and is for seborrheic dermatitis, but helps my condition too. It is nothing but essential oils and smells wonderful too. You can find it on the internet under that name.

Thanks for listening.
Still hopefull (after almost 2 years!!)

Posted By : jayed105 - 10/8/2010 10:06 AM
My 7-yearold son is going through the exact same thing that your wife is, sounds like. He feels great, just has hives that seem to come and go and move around his body now for 2 weeks. He too was on the amox and pred RX. Did your wife ever figure anything out? Did they finally go away on their own? Thanks for any help!

Posted By : Alcie - 10/8/2010 6:06 PM
I'm sure you have done plenty of reserching, but here's a website you may have missed about skin allergies.
I get allergic skin reactions if my laundry isn't double rinsed or I don't use All Free and Clear.  I was in the hospital for the last week and a half and all they did for my skin problem to start with was to give me Benadryl, which put me to sleep but didn't last long enough for the breakouts to go away.  I finally found out the do have double rinsed linens there, which helped immediately.

Posted By : xfilez76 - 10/10/2010 11:50 PM
Peak and jayed105,

I am going through very similar thing. I have sever hives starting every night around 9 and they go away slowly during the day, only to start all over again at night. I went to the er this morning and they gave me some prednisone but I am worry that it is not going to be enough.

Please share your experience how you get it treated and whether you found out what caused it.

Thank you much!

Posted By : Whomever - 11/12/2010 8:27 AM
I've had chronic uticaria for over 30 years -- finally found out accidentally that Prilosec and Allegra treat them for the day...they may come back but this is better than the strong doses of prednizone I have been over the years and you can continue the treatment without many side effects until they just go away for good.  Also this helps:  Cut out anything with vinegar in it -- and that's lots of additives -- salad dressing, marinades, Worcestershire Sauce, barbeque sauces, mustard.  Also cut out anything with tomato sauce -- pizzas, red past sauces, etc. -- basically anything with acetic acid.  Also, cutting out powdered additives like taco sauce helps.  It's all trial and error.  Unfortunately chocolate has never given me hives.  A baked potato seems safe, too.
My chronic utility uticaria will stay around 6-9 months and then just go away.  Two members of my family also have this and cutting out the acetic acid helps.  When I have hives I notice a strong acidic taste on the tip of my tongue.  Anyone else have this? 

Posted By : teAlexis - 11/21/2010 9:04 PM
May I ask what was the highest dose of prednisone you were given?
For some of my systemic allergic reactions I have to take a higher dose than most docs prescribe BUT only for two days (like a one-two punch) then I go off.

If I did not do it that way, I would not have gotten rid of the inflammation caused by fire ants and other insects.

Posted By : unhappyhen - 6/16/2011 4:09 PM
I have suffered Chronic Urticaria and Odema all day every day for almost 3 years now. I have tried so many of the medications you're all taking but I have some GOOD NEWS which MAY help some of you.
Before I go on, I would like to offer my opinion that after 3 years of doing my own research on all these different sites, I realise that Chronic Urticaria is NOT a skin problem, it seems to be an auto-immune problem.  Therefore Dermatologists can not really help.  The best person to see is an Immunologist.  (Obviously this is only my own observation and I can say this too because the itch etc was not actually on my skin, I used to repeatedly say to my husband : "it's deeper than that, it's inside me!!".  If you feel the same, then please continue to read..

My immunologist wanted me to try CICLOSPORIN (an immune suppressant). He told me he has SUCCESSFULLY treated many people sufferring with Chronic Urticaria. 2 years ago I was reluctant to try it as I was worried about getting "hairy" lol. But I had suffered so much that I couldn't take it any more so I went to him in April and started taking it.

It is now June and I haven't had any rash/welts/swelling/itching/burning/pain etc for about 8 weeks !!!! :)

It is amazing and I am so happy and I want to tell everyone who is suffering :-)

I've spent night after night after night on the computer trying to find myself a cure over the past few years and now I don't have to. But I wanted to help others.

Please bear in mind that the Ciclosporin can take about 6 weeks to get into your system. My immunologist put me on a "reducing dose" of steroids while we changed my medicines, and I came off the steroids very slowly but it worked and without suffering. I'm going back to see him next week and can't wait for him to see how happy I am as the last time I saw him I was in tears and covered in blood and scabs and now it's all gone!!  Reading the side effects is naturally slightly worrying, but I suppose it depends on how much each individual person is suffering.  I personally could not put up with it any more so I was willing to try anything mad
Good luck to you all, I know how you feel xx

P.S. I haven't got hairy yet - the hairs on my arms are fair anyway, they do seem slightly fluffier but I think that's a small price to pay! Still don't know what actually caused this horrible problem in the first place, but right now ..... I don't even care any more I'm just happy to feel human again.

Posted By : 19Mary84 - 10/15/2012 10:54 PM

I know this is an old post, but I thought that if anyone else with this problem reads it, I may be of help. I have gone through what ‘peakdescribed twice in life. So called chronic severe hives, that were not responsive to antihistamine or cortisol. , Both times the hives occurred few days after I finished the amoxicillin. The first time I was having them for almost 4 months and doctors were swearing there was no link to the antibiotics, consequently I was diagnosed with idiopathic urticaria. The second time it took about 6 months. Second time I also had additional symptoms like fever, really bad bone aches, night sweats, skin covered in something that appeared like white dusty-powder and ear itch.  

The hives were not caused by the amoxicillin as a substance itself – which is why the delayed and extended reaction (and I also had not tested as allergic to it, neither my Ig antibodies were ever increased during the out-brakes ). If something we could say that I was ‘allergic’ to what the amoxicillin has a potential to do to the healthy digestive system – ‘bad’ yeast overgrowth. In both cases I was treated with Nilstat (Nystatin) by the allergist. It took few repeats. I also taken number of supplements, one important one that was recommended to me by a medical practitioner who was also a naturopath, it was called Intestamine by Bioceuticals (the component you are after is called Glutamine) and strong probiotics. Second time I needed more repeats of Nilstat and I also invested a bit more in supplements, and got something called SB Floaactive with a strain of friendly bacteria called Saccaromycea boulardii.

Some recommend the candida diet and so on, I have never done it. Saying that I eat whole foods and no processed sugars anyway. Realistically speaking there are many different types of yeast and it may be something else than candida that is overgrowing. There are also many types of candida.  I stayed away from caffeine and alcohol for the sake of probiotics tho.

A word of advice: go to an allergist who specializes in yeast infections as most general practitioners will misdiagnose it. With general allergists you can spend your life searching for that one ‘allergen’ and find out it’s environmental and it cannot be avoided anyway. It’s better to fix the immune system from being confused. Some people suffer with hives due to yeast overgrowth after use or abuse of penicillins for years as a result of that ongoing misdiagnosis.

Last time I was told the hives are an evidence that my immune system  is very resposnive and it will go away when my 'gut' gets fixed. Unfortunately this does not happen overnight.

Good luck.

Posted By : Grendel - 11/10/2012 7:55 PM
Just curious, has anyone in this thread also had enlarged lymph nodes along with all the other symptoms? I have alerady been checked for lymphoma but curious if others suffering from chronic hives also have enlarged lymph nodes.

Posted By : WendyV - 11/10/2012 8:19 PM
Grendel said...
Just curious, has anyone in this thread also had enlarged lymph nodes along with all the other symptoms? I have alerady been checked for lymphoma but curious if others suffering from chronic hives also have enlarged lymph nodes.
Hi Grendel, to get off the track a little, I have used Ice Gel for an incredibly itchy rash which did not respond to trmt other than Prednisolone. It acted immediately and the rash started to recede the next day and has now gone completely. This is after two years of mis/non diagnosis and various treatments that did not work. It stopped the itch straight away!

Posted By : Paintergirl - 11/11/2012 11:30 AM
It's been nearly a year for me. I have done TONS of research on this and it appears that doctors can test for a few things, but often find no apparent cause for chronic hives. Then they give allergy meds or steroids, which only serve to cover up the symptoms and do further damage to the body over time. Anything lasting over a few weeks is NOT an allergy.

I have reduced my hives by doing parasite and candida cleanses. My research leads me to believe that hives are caused by an infection or chemical imbalance somewhere on the body. Candida overgrowth is particularly difficult to get rid of. Talk about a needle in a haystack though! Most success stories come from people who repeat detox steps (without overdoing it of course). This can take months, but the hives often disappear out of the blue.

The most common cause is an infection or toxin or microbe infestation in the digestive tract. Tooth infections, gluten sensitivities, and thyroid issues can also cause chronic hives.

Posted By : Viva_70 - 11/22/2012 9:37 AM
I had the same thing several years ago and I have it again now. The first time I had it, I had hives on my legs every night around 8-9 p.m. They went away during the day and came back each night. I tried everything...changing soaps, detergents, diet, everything. Nothing helped. Eventually, I went to the doctor. My doctor told me that they were caused by stress. Apparently whenever I tried to rest at night my body was trying to release so much stress and tension that my system was overwhelmed causing the hives. He told me that the solution was to reduce the stress. He also put me on some prescription strength antihistamine (I don't recall the name). I started taking the meds everyday. I also took steps to eliminate the stress. I ended a 2 year relationship that was causing a lot of stress and I got a new job with a lot less stress. The hives eventually stopped. Now, I'm in the same boat again. I guess I will have to re-examine life and find ways to get rid of the stress. That's the solution.

Posted By : whunter31 - 4/13/2013 6:19 AM
I am 36 male, 5'10, physically good health (blood pressure 110/74, good cholesterol levels, good kidney and liver levels, etc, except my testosterone level is low at 245 ng/dl - potentially from vasectomy from what my research has showed) and high eosinophils level was a 6, which I looked up and shows that eosinophils test counts the number of eosinophils (a type of white blood cell) in blood. It is used to evaluate and manage allergic conditions such as Allergic eczema, Asthma, Disseminated eosinophilic collagen disease, HIV infection, Infection by Anisakis larva, Infection by larvae of Trichinella spiralis, Infection by Schistosoma, or Infection by Strongyloides.  So, great, more stuff to bring up to a doc who didn't bother to tell me about this number....Good thing I asked for a copy of my lab results...Anyways, moving forward!
My Medical History:
I was previously treated by an Allergist in Colorado (Dr. Lora Stewart from Allergy and Asthma Care). I was scratch tested and was allergic to just about everything (all weeds, trees, grass, soy, cat, mold etc) and I was treated for 3 years with injections of these allergens starting with 2 shots a week small doses and building to a higher dose where it capped off and stayed at that dose with 2 shots/month for 3 years.  I never ever had hives before this, only asthma, which was why I was getting the treatment, so my airway would not tighten up after exposure to allergies. So fast forward to now, .... hives.
My Diet: Normal diet, mostly eggs, chicken, fish, cooked veggies, 2 generous glasses of wine (half bottle to be exact), I have noticed wheezing if I have too much wine(sulfites most likely but never had hives from wine), protein powders (whey protein), turkey sandwiches, chips on occasion, Cheetos on occasion, chocolate, pancakes, coffee, etc... I eat mostly healthy but cheat every now and then.
about a year and a half ago, my blood test showed that my thyroid was on the low side of the normal range (Range: 1 = High and 5 = Low). Mine was 5.5.  The doc put me on Levothryroxine, and a my levels have been very good at 3.5 right in the middle with the 50mcg of Levothyroxine daily.  I never had any reactions to this med, and this is the only med I take.  (maybe the itching is a sign of thyroid issue?).  I stopped the Levothyroxine for a few days and no improvement, so I'm back on it.
I am very curious about the posting from "Peak" at the top of this thread posted in 2009.
Out of the blue about 3 weeks ago, I began itching a lot with zero signs of any skin rash. After two weeks of scratching, I began noticing small raised clusters of whitsh clearish bumps after scratching.  The itching started on wrists and arms and then to my fingers.  The itching is intense and I want to scratch all the time however I try not too which creates a lot of tense stress from trying to refrain from scratching. It happens mostly at night starting around 9pm but it occurs in the afternoon around 2-3pm too. 
I went to a Dr. Steven Reynolds in Long Beach Ca, and he said it is definitely urticarial (hives) most likely from something I am allergic to and it was not scabies or bed bugs otherwise my girlfriend would have .    Dr. Reynolds gave me shot of Atarax and hydroxine pills to control the itching....and a week later, no results, in fact the hives got worse and now have bumps everywhere of red patches. 
I went back to Dr. Reynolds and now I'm taking the prednisone for two weeks starting with 3 pills a days and tapering down.  I have taken the first set of 3 pills and no results.  I am super itchy still and it seems Benadryl and zyrtec help only a little.  both sides of my neck have started to itch really bad too, along with behind the knees, tops of the thighs, groin, shins, fore arms, belly, arm pits. 
The only thing I can point to that changed in my diet was that I had a few juicing drinks of raw veggies.  I had roughly 3-4 glasses total spread over a few weeks, like one glass on the weekend, another during the week, and then again the following weekend, so not in high quantity.  The veggies I had ground up in the Juicer was Cellery, Raddish, Carrot, Spinach, Kale, Ginger. 
After taking the Juices I felt perfectly fine.  It was shortly after the (a day or two) juicing, is when the itching began.  This is the only thing I can point to that changed in my diet. I did notice too that I have been experiencing the reflux lately shortly after I stopped juicing.  I took tums to control it, but it went away, and I am not experiencing it now.  I am wondering if there is something in the juice that is causing my hives.  Some forums have many people who reacted with hives from juicing and continue juicing/detox made the hives go away, but I am afraid even attempt that.
I have spent hours reading forum after forum reading all the mystery cases of these hives where docs continue to band aid the symptoms with prednisone.  I have started to take probiotic Acidophilus and hope it helps but its too early to tell.  I began eating yogurt too.  The Candida bacteria sounds like possible cause or some other gastrointestinal imbalance or yeast.  The one post with the immune blocker medicine as last resort sounds promising but sounds risky...but better than itching and tension stress all night all day every day and reading forums from 1am to 4am every day.
If anyone reads this post and has a real answer to what this may be AND a Solution please contact me ASAP.  You can reach me at (  I will post a update after the prednisone.

Posted By : Cheline - 7/30/2013 12:01 PM
I started having the itchy hives in Aug. 2012. I believe it is due to stress. In Aug. 2012 we were on a weekend trip to the beach, it was hot, we were trying to coordinate meeting for lunch, we had our one month old grandson with us, who was not happy, I was stressed about my daughter who was worried about her son crying and being miserable. AT the same time, I am trying to make sure everyone is having a good time. Anyway, that evening after we got home from a very long 3 hour car ride, I noticed what looked like mosquito bites on my wrist. It kept getting worse up my arms then my chin, neck. I went to bed not thinking it was anything to worry about.
I wake up the next day and I have the same itchy, no new improvement. Then I started to ask my whole family if they had a rash and nobody did.
So by Wedndesday, so the fourth day, I finally go into the urgent care because the rash has spread, no relief from the itch. They give me prednisone, zyrtec and Benadryl regimen. All of that helped. So here we are almost a year later and I am still on the same treatment, minus the steroids. I only take the prednisone when my rash starts to get out of control. The reason I attribute my rash to stress is that in June I started breaking out again, despite taking my meds, due to some stressful, hostile situations we were dealing with our neighbors. They are horrible people, anyway, that's another topic. Due to that situation, I noticed my hives return gradually. Now my daughter is getting married on Aug. 3 and the stress of that also, I believe has caused my hives to be more intense. I have started taking the prednisone again as needed. I am hoping that by the time the wedding is over, my hives will go away as I will not have this stress regarding wedding preparations and entertaining family from out of town.  S
Since probably Sep 2012 to May 2013, my hives did not completely go away, I would get spot or two here and there, despite taking the zyrtec and Benadryl, every day. I was ok with that, as I too am on a journey to try to figure out why I really get these hives. I have had thyroid issues, still take my meds for that too, I even had my thyroid taken out in Feb due having cancer, but the amount they found was so tiny, that I opted for them to take it and I did the radioactive treatment pill. So going through that in feb-May of 2013, did not really cause me any stress.
What I am going through now, is similar to my symptoms I was suffering when I first started getting hives. it does get bad at night and also I wake up with hives all over my face, once I take my zyrtec they do go down, but the redness is visible where I had a hive. when it gets really bad, the prednisone helps within 4 hours. the other scary symptom and painful is when I feel it in my throat, the feeling I have is like when you swallow food that is too big or like when you get food stuck in your throat when you try to swallow too fast?? anyway, that feeling comes in waves, throughout the night. I have not really read that this happens to a lot of people. Good luck everyone finding some relief from the itch. thanks for reading.

Posted By : flipflop54 - 8/9/2013 10:24 PM
I'm hypothyroid, and I suffer from urticaria. I suspect the former causes the latter. I flare up only when an aggravating factor is present. My best guess as to that factor is an ingredient or contaminant in soap or laundry detergent.

My hypothyroidism went undiagnosed for years because I registered as normal on the standard test, for TSH. One lesson I draw is that a person can be hypothyroid, and suffer from hypothyroid's symptoms, even when his/her doctor says there's nothing wrong.

I suggest that if you suffer from urticaria, you have your thyroid function checked. If your TSH reading is above 0.3 -- the minimum level considered normal -- try to persuade your doctor to prescribe thyroid medication. If you're already on thyroid medication, try to have your dosage increased.

I can't promise it'll work, but it may be worth trying.

Best of luck, to all of us on this thread.

Posted By : rulo - 8/11/2013 5:04 PM
Hello everyone,

I'd like to thank all of you for your insights on this forum. I would like to share my brief story with urticaria thus far.

about a month ago I acquired poison ivy, due to this being on my face I was given prednisone 12-day by my doctor. This worked great (aside from the crazy thoughts and bloating). about 9 days into prednisone (as it was weaning down) I started developing hives everywhere and the itching was incredible (I lost the battle with the scractching). Subsequently, I went to the doctor twice more because of the scratching, my dosage was increased to a whopping 60mg per day plus all anti-histamines known (yes h1 and h2, from benadryl to zyrtec, montelukast to ranitidine. Nothing helped get rid of the hives and I was miserable as well as a walking pharmacy.

I gave up on my doctors and turn to Dr. google and found this and other sites where I narrowed what was happening to me. As you may know, our bodies walk a very fine line and balance is the key. I surmised that the reason for my hives was caused due to the prednisone suppressing my immune system and wiping out good flora in my stomach, which sometimes leads to excessive histamine being release systemically (hence my hives). I quickly had my wife assist me in getting the things I needed to rebuild my good flora:

Step 1: 2 days of taking diluted bragg's organic apple cider vinegar exclusively (morning, afternoon, evening x 2 diluted teaspoon in a 8 ounce water or green tea cup).

Step 2: after 2 days of that I started only taking that mixture once a day and commenced the flora building: kefir from wegman's (or other chain that carries this), vitamin d-3 (5000 iu), and swanson's probiotic 66 billion colony forming units product (1 pill a day). I made sure not to take the kefir or swanson's pill within a couple of hours of taking the apple cider vinegar; the vinegar will .

Step 3: continue with step 3 for 30 days until the probiotics run out (30 pills, 30 days), but continue the other components for upkeep.

In conclusion, about 4 days in to this methodology (steps 1 + 2) I stopped getting hives!!! Since our bodies are different your mileage may vary. I was lucky enough to find the perfect mix for getting rid of my hives (which by the way were driving me crazy due to doctors not helping and their medications were only dealing with the symptoms and not addressing the root cause).

I would suggest this to anyone that starts developing urticaria out of the blue or has been taking anti-biotics, prednisone, or any other drugs that kill our natural good flora.

Thank you again and I hope that this can help some of you in your fight against the evil urticaria.

Best regards,

Dr. Rulo (not a medical doctor)

Post Edited (rulo) : 8/11/2013 5:07:02 PM (GMT-6)

Posted By : mthergood - 8/17/2013 9:56 PM
Hello, when this happened to me for the last 35 years off and on. I had swollen eyes, lips, legs, arms feet, tongue etc. Two years ago I found that I was allergic to my own progesterone. Before I found out, when I was premenstrual they became so bad I was hospitalized. My tongue had swollen so large I had a hard time breathing. I've been on Lupron via my Gyn and I have been free of the problem. A last resort is having a complete hysterectomy. I'm not at that point but the medication has put me in menopause. Have your allergist test for hormone response to both progesterone and  estrogen.  You must work with your allergist and gynecologist for this issue.
Blessings from the creator and good luck.

Posted By : jesuslover - 8/18/2013 5:56 PM
I am going through a divorce right now and have severe hives on my scalp. It is so miserable to have hives like this. It is very helpful to read these posts and know that I am not alone. I am going to my doctor tomorrow to see what he says. I will try the vinegar rinse in the shower tonight. Any other suggestions would be helpful.

Posted By : caf21 - 8/23/2013 8:16 PM
Mothergood, I also have autoimmune progesterone dermatitis. Can I ask what treatments you tried before Lupron? My doctor (allergist) is trying antihistimines first, which aren't at all effective. Which I already knew, of course, but I do agree that we should try the most conservative treatments first and progress toward treatments with more serious side effects. As opposed to what I want to do, which is cut it out and burn it, lol. In the meantime, I am starting a round of prednosone every 28 days and just itching and itching and itching. And swelling! So any advice you could give me about your treatment and how you arrived at it would be so helpful. Thanks!

Posted By : Kittykat85 - 8/25/2013 6:23 AM
i have read a lot of your comments and i just wanted to share my story. I am a 28 yo female living in rural Western Australia. i have suffered from hives (chronic urticaria) all my life. I have been poked and prodded by many doctors, dietitians, derma specialists and allergy specialists.

I have spend a majority of my life trying not the scratch my skin till it bleeds.

I have found i am not allergic to the certain common foods or allergens that doctors initially think is the catalyst of my condition. I have been put on cocktails of different drugs to (zytec & zantec) to cover different histamine blockers and yet my immune system gets used to these combinations which after a few weeks makes them useless. I have come to the point where i must live with and put up this condition.

Just because you aren't allergic does not mean anything, as stress can be a main cause for urticaria. Corny as it sounds relieving stress can help in a lot of cases, avoid itchy clothes and scalding hot showers. exercise also can help. but one thing i have learn - if you get wheals on your arms or legs - dont hide them - as for me if i hide them as if i am ashamed of myself the wheals before bigger and itchier then ever.

my advice as someone that has chronic urticaria (which can be located over 100% of my body) check and look at what you are eating, exercise and de-stress!!! oh.. and keep trying!!

Posted By : Healing98 - 8/27/2013 9:17 PM
Hi, I found this thread while researching urticaria and any side effects to the medicines that I am taking for it. From what I have read, it seems like the deck is stacked against me.

Two weeks ago, I woke up with hives all over the body. They were not many, but very itchy and all over. I could not see a doctor right away, panicked, and so I drove myself to the hospital. I was given Prednizone and Benadryl. At the time I was on Omeprazole, Amoxicillin, and Clarithromycin. I was told to stop them. The hives lasted for two days and went away. I had used Hydrocortisone the night before for what I thought was a yeast infection on my penis. Two weeks, later (present time) I used the Hydrocortisone for two little bumps that I had in my arms and a few hours later, I was covered in hives. I now realize that it is probably the Hydrocortisone that I am allergic to, but what is strange is that I am now on my third day of taking the Benadryl and Prednizone and even thought they do get rid of the hives for a few hours, they continue to come back. They seem to come back stronger every time. Initially, we thought that it was an allergic reaction to the Amoxicillin but I am unsure now.

The reason that I say that I have the deck stacked against me is that I have Lyme Disease and cannot take Prednizone because it weakens my immune system and the Lyme goes wild. Second, the Lyme Disease has caused me to suffer from Hashimotos, making me hypothyroid. Third, The Amoxicillin that I am taking for Lyme is killing my Flora so I probably have a yeast infection in my stomach. Fourth, I have stopped taking the PPI (Omeoprazole) because we initially thought that it might be what was causing the hives, and so now I have an acid situation in my stomach after being on it for over a year.

I am now taking Benadryl every three hours, Zyrtec once a day, and two Prednizone once a day. I am going to make an appointment with my doctor tomorrow and see if he can help me. I doubt it from what I have read here so far. I thought it was bad enough to deal with all of the issues associated with the Lyme disease and now this.

Posted By : Lee L - 9/23/2013 2:06 PM
I had chronic hives back in the early 80's that lasted 6 weeks
Went on a gluten free diet & all worked then.
I had a reoccurrence in 2009 that lasted 6 months, I was determined to discover the cause & would not take prednisone while going form 1 doc to the next. Finally ended up at Mayo clinic after many tests , trips to the ER for internal hives in my throat & an inflamed esophagus, treated with a shot of epinephrine. The rheumatologist ruled out the known autoimmune afflictions & sent me to the dermatologist there.He took a biopsy of some of the hives over my body, after intense testing it came back idiopathic autoimmune issue. His treatment plan is the only 1 that has worked for me, an old drug called dioxipin, normally for depression, it contains 2 histamine blockers H1 & H 2 that typically cause hives.10 mg to start & worked up to 30 over a months time. Then slowly came off it all & was clear till the past 2 weeks.back on the 10 mg , the itching & hives stop immediately. Will stay on for a month
I never read any blog back 4 yrs ago, wished I had, so many folks with similar symptoms, treatments, testing,including the pressure hives.I no longer really care about the cause as long as I can control the symptoms,feel well & continue enjoying life..

Posted By : GraciesMom - 12/18/2013 10:25 PM
Hi everyone, its comforting to know that we're not the only ones dealing with this. My daughter is 9, let me start off by saying, shes sensitive to alot of things, sunlight, heat, cold, etc. but it's never been an actual allergy. For instance she can get a mosquito bite and it will swell up like she's been bit by a snake. about a week and a half ago, maybe 2 weeks, we got our christmas tree out of the storage room and before I put it up I wanted to clean the carpets so I used my new carpet cleaner and used the sample bissell cleaning solution that came with it, there was only enough to do a portion of my floors with that cleaner. So after everything dried and we got the tree up my daughter and son (like they always do) laid under the tree, smack dab on top of the freshly cleaned floor. That was around 3:30-4pm, around 10:00 she came to me with what looked like a mosquito bite, she was scratching like crazy. she got in the shower and by the time she had got out her back and legs were covered, and it wasn't just a rash, these were HUGE raised hives that went the length of her legs. Scared the crap out of me, so I gave her some benadryl and put her to bed with me so I could watch her, about 1 am I opened my eyes and looked at her and her face was covered, arms, almost everything. So I got her up and put her in a luke warm tub thinking something was still on her. This has gone on for this long, last week I took her to the doctor Monday and he put her on prednisone, after 3 doses there was no change, they seem to be the same if not worse so I took her back in Tuesday and he said to give her the full 5 days of steroids before panicking, well she was done with the steroids on saturday and she has broken out every night since then, tonight is the worst, its almost covering her back. I thought at first it was the carpet cleaning detergent, because it was new, I had never used that brand of cleaner before. But shouldn't it be out of her system by now, I went back over the area with plain water, I've vacuumed, etc. Something has to give, It seems to happen mostly at night when she's all covered up, although it did happen once at school while she was on the carpet, the teacher said once she got her up off the floor she started clearing up. And then once at walmart while she had a heavy jacket on, her arms were covered. I just dont get it, there's got to be something causing this all of a sudden, I would be more than happy to get rid of whatever it is if I just knew! If its my husband or my son, they're out, lol! Anyway, thanks for all the stories and suggestions, hopefully we will all feel better soon!

Posted By : Sophie&Urticaria - 3/4/2014 10:00 AM
Hi everyone, yes it is very comforting to hear about everyone story and that some people have succeeded to eliminate the urticaria. I am a very active women (Personal Trainer and Sport Nutritionist) and run almost every day. I eat no process food, shake with only natural ingredients in the morning, no sugar, no gluten, a very very clean diet... Except for wine and cheese on the weekend ;-) I have started my urticaria slowly after coming back from a trip in Roatan, it started with the palms of my hand and after only 2 months, I am now covered everywhere. I tried eliminating the food and reintroducing, cleaning sheet and clothes with Clean detergent. Got tested by allergist and she first put me on
Allegra 10 mg 2x in the morning
with Xantax 150 mg
Zentex 20 mg 2x at night

I called yesterday and told the Allergist it was just getting worse and that I was losing it, not able to focus neither work! She added
Doxepin 25 mg at night

I also have a pain that under my left breast that come and go, almost like stomach burns. It is the first morning taking the new Doxepin, and I am literally covered from head to toes...Do you know how long it takes for the Doxepin to have its effects? I slept a little better but was still itching all night. I also never take medication, I need to be very desperate to take so many now...

I cannot believe that most of the doctors said it is related to stress. I have just started my Personal Training business 8 months a go, I work at home, successful and I could never be as happy in my career... Kids are gone to College, no issues, nice supportive husband... Life was so smooth and good until hives...What is wrong with me? When she told me that some people can have urticaria for 5 to 7 years I bursted in tears... I cannot not live like this!!! We withdraw from our social life, I don't want to see anemone, so depressed and have to cancelled customers regularly because I look too scary or cannot focus :-(

Please help me... Any advises would help. I am desperate for help.


Posted By : Sibi1 - 9/9/2014 6:38 PM
My itching and rashes started the first week of august on my palms, wrists and the back of my neck. I didnt think much about it as I dismissed it as contact allergy from touching my fig tree leaves while harvesting the fruits for only the second season. After three weeks, it started getting progressively worse. (I had been eating bad especially the third week, too much fried food, coffee and canned drinks) And the weather in Dallas is in the 100s. Didnt think it mattered as I barely went out. I tried Allegra, claritin, bendadryl topical and oral each just one dose with two days in between. Symptoms only got worse. So thinking I need a strong presciption, went to the PCP, who gave prednisone and hydroxizine (Atarax). I was fine the next day. Atarax being an anti anxiety med, even made me feel relaxed and happy which made me think I can take it often as I am generally in a depressive mood. WRONG!! The next day, instead of the small red bumps, I had full blown hives that itched like crazy and made me so sleepy I could not work. Immeidately discontinued the meds and went to see a dermatalogist inspite of knowing better who swore I am allergic to some fragrances. told me to stay from detergents and perfumes and come back to see him after 4 weeks. Yeah right I will see him again. Asked him if my gut health could be in question. he didnt bat his eyelids but didnt look at me in the eye for the rest of appointment.
Came back home and started analyzing the last few months' diet habit. The nurse at the PCP office had mentioned that I was almost running a fever and when I remembered that, it just clicked! This is caused my excessive body heat caused by body heat and the excessive air conditioning which didnot allow my body to sweat when I went outside even for a short time. I had also been eating meat for the last two years after being a vegetarian for 40 years. Even though I rarely ate 4 oz of meat a day, it probablly was too much for my body to handle even with the two glasses of green juice I was drinking yesterday. But again, the ginger in the juice could be elevating my body heat as well. I should have stopped the ginger once the weather got warm.
So I started the regimen of cooling my body down. Castor oil bath from head to toe the first day, the second day coconut oil bath. Sandalwood powder on the hives which got worse at night. One day I took coconut oil bath twice as I had eaten a rather spicy food for lunch. Fourth day into the cooling regimen, I started drinking barley water like a gallon , skipped all meat, ate only raw cucumber and radish salad with toasted cumin and fennel with barely a pinch of salt. Slept like a baby that night. Now that I am tuned into my body, I could feel the heat emanating from under the breasts, palms, ears and abdomen. I know I have to do this regimen for atleast two weeks now. If I go to an Ayurvedic doctor, I know the meds they give me would help me recover fast but I am holding off for now as they dont come cheap in the US.

Posted By : Jay Fosters - 9/11/2014 8:29 AM
when I was a teenager I used to get horrible outbreaks of hives. I never found out what exactly caused them, but a doctor prescribed me Zertec and they disappeared almost overnight and never came back. Not sure if it is the same zertec we have today, but it worked like a charm. Before zertec, outmeal baths helped ease the discomfort a little bit, but not much, same with benadryl. The hydrocortisone creams can help some, but they are messy. Sorry for your trouble, let me know if zertec helps.

Posted By : JRWaikoloa - 1/11/2015 2:15 PM
I had the same issues without having taken any antibiotics. After seeing many doctors the one that made sense diagnosed me as having Chronic Urticaria due to my Hashimito's Thyroiditis by my ND. The allergist immunologist or endocrinologist didn't have any answers as to why.

I was put on 4 different antihistamines the same as your wife twice daily along with Flonase. I also had numerous steroid shots and my face swelled too. My Naturopath put me on a very low dose of Naltrexone which I still take nightly and other thyroid supplements.

I followed a Hystamine Free diet as outlined on the International Chronic Urticaria Society site. It all started August 20, 2014 and my last breakout was December 8, 2014. I have since stopped taking the antihistamines and am adding foods to my diet. I found I did break out more when I ate foods on the restricted list. Have her try it. It is definitely worth it.

She my also be interested in checking out the Low Histamine Chef for ideas and recipes. I opted for plain high nutrient foods.

Posted By : ckllp - 9/14/2015 5:35 AM
I'm not saying this is the healthiest idea but I have been taking Ibuprofen to help with the itching. Just like it works to reduce pain, it also reduces the intensity of the itching. It is an anti-inflammatory so it may be acting in that capacity as well, but I can't tell. I take 6-800 mg. which might be more than some people would need. I am able to go to work and to sleep by using this. Hope this helps someone.

Posted By : LaLa851 - 9/28/2015 2:24 PM
I wanted to tell my story to better help anyone with a similar issue. I am an 18 year old female, and after leaving my parents house to start my adult life, I developed a bad case of hives. about a month ago I began to develop what looked to be a contact form of hives, they would seemingly itch and flare up for no reason at all. For a month I tried everything I could think Epsom salt baths, calamine lotion, Benadryl, Zyrtec, Cortisone creams, etc. Nothing seemed to phase my hives, they itched do bad I hardly got any sleep. One night while watching tv I got up to let my dog out and immediately felt the backs of my thighs were covered in hives. Because this reaction was so fresh I immediately back tracked. I thought to myself, "What did I touch? What have I eaten in the past hour?". I then decided to rub every thing I had touched on my arms to test them, but none of my "test patches" reacted with my skin. Then, it occurred to me that I had sat on the closed toilet lid to bathe my dog. I immediately ran back to the lid and sat on it, within minutes my legs were once again completely engulfed in hives. After doing some research I found that some children and even some adults are actually allergic to wooden toilet seats and lids that were either covered in a polyurethane coating or a thick varnish. I clean my apartment with nothing but vinegar and water, so there is no possible way it was a reaction to the chemical used to clean my toilet. I got lucky, no allergy test would have revealed the culprit, and without removing the allergen, no medicine or cream would have worked. Some people suffered for years before their doctors remembered this allergy from their medical books. If you have hives on your back, stomach, thighs, and hands, I encourage you to test out this allergy. No one suspects a toilet seat to cause an allergic reaction.

Posted By : TT - 2/4/2016 9:33 PM
See your doctor about XOLAIR injections - mostly symptom free. God bless

Posted By : iWantToLive - 5/1/2016 2:14 PM
Its possi le she has adrenal insufficiency with the whole cyclical thing going on. Ask her doc to run adrenal gland tests.
Nonclonal Mast Cell Activation Syndrom, CYP Genome Defficiency, Kounis Syndrome


Posted By : daveh567 - 9/30/2017 6:17 PM
Hey everyone if you are getting hives try changing your bed sheets to 100% cotton polyesters and such contain formaldehyde which is a known to cause cancer and hives and has been also tied to asthma and migraines also. Google formaldehyde free bed sheets.

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