Resources and Links

Books

Hives: The Road To Diagnosis and Treatment of Urticaria by Alan A. Wanderer, M.D. 2003. Bozeman, MT: Anson Publishing.
Excellent resource for patients and health care professionals. It covers a wide range of possible contributing causes, standard treatments, discussion of various medications, and conditions that masquerade as hives. Appendixes include worksheets for keeping health diaries and treatment records. This is the only book we are aware of that addresses chronic urticaria specifically and in detail.

The Allergy Bible: The Conventional and Alternative Guide to Understanding, Avoiding, and Treating Allergies by Linda Gamlin & Jonathan Brostroff. 2001. New York: Readers Digest.
An illustrated guide which aims to demystify the subject of allergies. It features an impartial review of commonly used tests and treatments, advice on reducing your exposure to allergens, practical research-based information, allergy-prevention programmes to minimize the risk of children developing allergies and asthma, and genuine case studies on how real people cope with their allergies.  Along with a detailed guide to allergies and their symptoms, you’ll find easy-to-understand answers to common questions, as well as ways to eliminate or lessen the impact of troublesome or even life-threatening attacks. Includes an overview of both conventional and complementary therapies.

Dietary Management of Food Allergies & Intolerances: A Comprehensive Guide, by Janice Vickerstoff Joneja. 1998. J. A. Hall Publications.
The histamine-restricted diet and accompanying information found elsewhere on this site come from this very valuable resource. This book covers just about everything that can possibly cause medical problems, not just limited to histamine and salicylates, but all kinds of additives and naturally occuring chemicals in foods. Joneja wrote another book, Dealing With Food Allergies: A Practical Guide to Detecting Culprit Foods and Eating a Healthy, Enjoyable Dietwhich is also excellent.

Living Well with Autoimmune Disease by Mary Shomon. 2002. New York: HarperResource.
This book is included here because many CU patients have autoimmune disease. Be aware that there is no discussion of urticaria itself. It’s a good resource for the newly diagnosed patient, or a person who suspects he or she has an autoimmune disease. If you have dealt with your disease for a long time, you may not need the book. The first half is essentially a survey of autoimmune disorders, so if you already know what you have, you may want to skip to the second half. (You may also find yourself thinking you have many of these illnesses as you read the symptoms.) The second half helps you narrow down your list of symptoms, outlines possible holistic approaches that can help you live with your disorder, and talks about how you can develop an overall health management plan—a good thing for those of us who are grasping at every possible hope for a cure.

The Thyroid Solution by Rida Arem, M.D. 1999. Ballantine Books.
Chronic urticaria is often associated with thyroid disease, so although this book only makes a passing mention of hives, it is a valuable resource for those of us with thyroid disease. It addresses the myriad symptoms of thyroid disorders that may be misdiagnosed if thyroid testing is not done, and it explains how “normal” thyroid test results may actually indicate abnormal levels. The book also describes a variety of possible treatment plans in addition to the standard prescription for synthetic thyroid. If you have thyroid disease, or think you do, this book may lead to some enlightening “aha” moments.

Links

The Australian and New Zealand Chronic Urticaria Foundation—Site developed by ICUS member Warren, aimed at raising awareness of CU in Australia and New Zealand. Offers a particularly useful page on keeping cool with CU.

The Mastocytosis Society—Non-profit organization dedicated to helping patients, caregivers and medical personnel understand Mast Cell Disorders and the impact they have on patient’s lives.

About.com—This is a huge collection of subsites about many different topics. Each subsite has a guide—a person who writes articles, collects information, gathers links, etc. on specific topics. The About sites that are most useful to chronic urticaria sufferers are AllergiesDermatology, and Thyroid.

Allergy, Asthma & Immunology Online—Information for patients

Allergy Nursing—Ask the Allergy Nurse

American Academy of Dermatology—Patient pamphlet on urticaria

American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association

American Osteopathic College of Dermatology

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America

Asthma and Allergy Information and Research (AAIR)—Patient information

Atlas of Dermatology

Dermatology Image Atlas, Johns Hopkins University—A searchable goldmine of images

The Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network

Medline Plus—Links to loads of information, including drug information.

National List of Clinical Trials (U.S.)ClinicalTrials.gov

NeedyMeds—Information source to learn about patient assistance programs and other programs designed to help those who can’t afford their medicines.

New Zealand Dermatological Society

University of Iowa College of Medicine, Department of Dermatology, Dermatologic Image Database

Urticaria Hub—Page of links to other information

Articles

Chronic Urticaria : Expanding the Autoimmune Kaleidoscope, by Brig YK Sharma, Maj Vinay Gera, Lt Gen VD Tiwari (Retd). Medical Journal Armed Forces India 2004; 60 : 372-378

Hives and Angioedema, by the Mayo Clinic Staff

Urticaria, by Mary Beth Crawford, M.D.

Urticaria (Hives), by Mark B. Levin, M.D.

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