Clinical Immunology Review Series: An approach to the patient with angio-oedema

Authors


  • Series Originator: Edward Kaminski Series Editor: Stephen Jolles

H. J. Longhurst, Barts and The London NHS Trust, Pathology Building, 2nd floor, Royal London Hospital, London E1 2ES, UK.
E-mail: hilary.longhurst@bartsandthelondon.nhs.uk

Summary

Angio-oedema is a common reason for attendance at the accident and emergency department and for referral to immunology/allergy clinics. Causative factors should always be sought, but a large proportion of patients have the idiopathic form of the disease. A minority of patients represent a diagnostic and treatment challenge. Failure to identify the more unusual causes of angio-oedema may result in life-threatening situations. Common and rare causes of angio-oedema will be discussed in this article, as well as the diagnostic and treatment pathways for the management of these patients. A comprehensive history and close monitoring of response to treatment are the most cost-effective diagnostic and treatment tools.

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