medical condition:


What are Hives?

Hives, also known as urticaria, are raised, itchy, and red welts that appear abruptly on the skin. They can range in size from a small pinpoint to large plaques covering several inches. Hives can appear anywhere on the body, and they may come and go over a few hours or persist for days or even weeks. While often harmless, they can be distressing and significantly impact your quality of life.

Different Types of Hives


There are two main types of hives:

  • Acute hives: These develop suddenly and typically resolve within 24 hours. An allergic reaction to food, medication, or an insect bite or sting often triggers them.
  • Chronic hives: These persist for more than six weeks and often have no identifiable cause. They can be incredibly frustrating and challenging to manage.

Who Experiences Hives?

Hives are a common skin condition, affecting roughly 20% of people at some point in their lives. They can occur at any age, but young adults and women seem to be more susceptible. Certain underlying conditions, such as autoimmune diseases or thyroid problems, can also increase your risk of developing hives.

  • Children: Common in children due to various triggers like infections and allergies.
  • Women: Hormonal changes, especially during pregnancy, can contribute to hives.
  • Allergy-Prone Individuals: Those with a history of allergies are more prone to hives.
Young woman with acne problem near mirror in bathroom

Spotting the Signs: Recognizing Common Hives Symptoms

The most characteristic symptom of hives is the presence of raised, itchy welts. These welts are typically:

  • Red or pinkish
  • Surrounded by a pale halo
  • Variable in size and shape
  • Accompanied by intense itching or burning

In addition to welts, some people with hives may also experience:

  • Swelling of the lips, tongue, or eyelids
  • Difficulty breathing or wheezing (in severe cases)
  • Abdominal pain, nausea, or vomiting

Revealing Hives Triggers: Investigating Factors Behind Hives

Identifying the trigger for your hives is crucial for effective management. Common triggers include:

  • Food allergies: Foods like shellfish, peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, soy, and milk are frequent culprits.
  • Medications: Antibiotics, aspirin, and ibuprofen are some examples.
  • Insect bites or stings
  • Physical stimuli: Pressure, heat, cold, sunlight, exercise, and even water contact can trigger hives in some individuals.
  • Internal diseases: Infections, autoimmune disorders, and thyroid problems can sometimes underlie chronic hives.

How are Hives Diagnosed?

Accurate diagnosis involves:

  • Physical Examination: Visual inspection of welts, their duration, and associated symptoms.
  • Medical History: Identifying potential triggers through a comprehensive patient history review.
  • Allergy Testing: Conducting tests to identify specific allergens triggering hives.

Managing and Treating Hives

The mainstay of hives treatment involves avoiding identified triggers and managing symptoms.

  • Antihistamines: These medications help block the release of histamine, a chemical in the body that triggers the allergy response and the development of hives.
  • Corticosteroids: In severe cases, oral or topical corticosteroids might be prescribed to reduce inflammation and itching.
  • Omalizumab: This injectable medication can be helpful for chronic hives that don’t respond well to other treatments.

Insights into Hives Complications

While most cases of hives are harmless, there can be potential complications in rare instances. These include:

  • Anaphylaxis: This is a severe allergic reaction that can be life-threatening. If you experience difficulty breathing, wheezing, or swelling of the throat or tongue along with hives, seek immediate medical attention.
  • Angioedema: This is a deeper swelling that affects the tissues beneath the skin and can occur alongside hives.

Lifestyle Adjustments: Managing Hives Through Practical Changes

In addition to medical treatments, certain lifestyle changes can help manage hives and reduce the frequency of flare-ups:

  • Identify and avoid your triggers: Keeping a detailed diary of your hives episodes and potential triggers can help you pinpoint what might be causing them.
  • Manage stress: Stress can worsen hives symptoms. Relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation can be beneficial.
  • Wear loose, breathable clothing: Tight clothing can irritate the skin and exacerbate itching.
  • Take cool showers: Avoid hot showers and baths, as they can aggravate hives.
  • Use a hypoallergenic moisturizer: This can help soothe dry, itchy skin.

Schedule a Consultation

If you are experiencing hives, it is crucial to consult a board-certified dermatologist for proper diagnosis and treatment. At Ayana Dermatology & Aesthetics, our team of experienced professionals is dedicated to providing personalized care for all your medical skin concerns, including hives. We utilize advanced diagnostic tools and cutting-edge treatments to help you achieve clearer, healthier skin

Customer Love: Our Reviews Speak for Themselves

Helen P.
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I had a great experience at Ayana Dermatology! Dr. Levi is a fantastic physician. She was very kind to me and thorough in her exam. You can clearly see she has a passion for her career and patients. Her clinic is beautiful and clean. Staff was kind and welcoming. I am happy to have found my dermatologist!
Nicole A.
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My experience at Ayana has been nothing short of amazing! I came to Dr. Levi for hair loss, and she took the time to really listen to me and discussed all treatment options with me in detail. Not only do I feel cared for by everyone at the office, but I have also seen significant improvement in my hair growth using Dr. Levi's medical advice and treatment approach. Go to Ayana if you want results and the best care in South FL!
Allan h.
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Dr. Levi and staff were true professionals. Great results and competitive rates. What I thought would take months for my skin to heal was almost gone in only 1 week. Will definitely come back!
Amanda P.
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So blessed to have a AYANA DERMATOLOGY in Wilton Manors!! Good bye med spas - overpriced and lack quality control. Dr. Cherise Mizrahi-Levi Is generous with her knowledge and time. I love learning about how to care for my skin without the med spa gimmicks.
Bernard R.
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I am from Miami Beach and now live in Orlando. I am frequently in Fort Lauderdale because that is where my kids live. I have been to many dermatologists over the years. Dr. Levi is by far the best dermatologist I have ever seen. Her attention to detail is incredible. She is highly intelligent and is great at communicating what is going on. I can't put into words how great of a doctor she is. highly recommend her!
Theresa S.
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Amazing service from first call to end of appointments. Been here several times for different things and they are consistently professional and friendly!
Therese N.
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Dr. Levi and her staff were attentive and tried to help with my concerns. Will be seeing her again in about three weeks for a followup.
Kirsten b.
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Dr. Levi is amazing. She takes the time to understand your problem and then works with you to improve your condition. You don't feel rushed and you are definitely listened to. Her follow up is fantastic, taking time to call you personally with lab results.
Talia N.
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The best derm experience I’ve ever had, truly. I felt well taken care of by the entire team. Dr. Levi is warm, caring, and incredibly knowledgeable regarding all aspects of dermatology. She took her time to explain everything from A-Z so I didn’t leave with any worries or concerns. I highly recommend this practice! Experienced skin care professionals, Amazing results, Expert facials, Licensed skin care professionals, Professional products, Beautiful results.
Mirit g.
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Thank you for the knowledge, explanation and special treatment Dr. Cherise M. Levi you're the best! Beautiful place, so peaceful & great team! Definitely going to see you soon again 🙂
Elizabeth K.
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Wonderful, caring doctor. Takes her time with patients. Never rushes. Listens to patient & makes informed recommendations. Great support staff. Makes good recommendations for skin care products. Will continue to go to Ayana Dermatology for skin cancer checks.
Ivan D.
yelp review
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Beautiful office great staff very professional the doctor comes with a magnificent history in the industry in NYC she makes you feel very comfortable and i have total confidence in her decisions and advice so glad i found her!

Frequently asked questions

While stress can contribute, it is often a combination of factors that lead to hives.

No, hives are not contagious and cannot be transmitted from one person to another.

Acute hives may resolve within hours, while chronic hives can persist for several weeks or more.

Yes, chronic hives may be associated with underlying health conditions, and thorough evaluation is recommended.

It is always best to see a doctor for any new or persistent skin condition, including hives. This is especially important if you experience severe symptoms such as difficulty breathing, wheezing, or swelling of the face, lips, or tongue.

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