Hives are also known medically as urticaria. Hives present as very itchy areas and may be inflamed. Hives can be chronic (greater than 6 weeks), or acute (less than 6 weeks) in nature. They are superficial and normally skin coloured with some redness around them and can last for a few minutes or up to a day. Anyone can experience hives in their lifetime.
Hives can be caused by allergens, vaccinations, bug bites or viral infections. There is no specific routine diagnostic testing to diagnose urticaria, but bloodwork that looks at inflammatory markers can be ordered or sometimes a skin biopsy can help. Treatments for hives and itching involve oral antihistamines (allergy medications) and topical creams. In most cases, hives will eventually disappear on their own, or with avoidance of triggers, ie. allergens.
At Aspire Care Cosmetic Clinic, scheduling a cosmetic consultation is hassle-free, and no referral is needed. However, if your concern leans towards a medical issue, we may guide you to our Skin Clinic. It’s important to note that for consultations with Dr. Wang in our Skin Clinic, an Alberta Health Services (AHS) requirement may necessitate a referral from a licensed medical professional. Examples of such professionals include medical doctors, audiologists, registered midwives, chiropractors, podiatrists, dentists, optometrists, physical therapists, and nurse practitioners. Additionally, please be aware that AHS may require a referral, and it may expire if you haven’t seen Dr. Wang within a year.