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Keywords:

  • consensus;
  • SIGN;
  • treatment guideline;
  • urticaria;
  • wheal

This guideline is the result of a consensus reached during a panel discussion at the second International Consensus Meeting on Urticara, Urticaria 2004, a joint initiative of the EAACI Dermatology Section and GA2LEN. Urticaria has a profound impact on the quality of life, and effective treatment is therefore required. The recommended first line treatment are nonsedating H1 antihistamines. They have proven to be effective in double-blind controlled studies, but dosages increased up to fourfold over the recommended doses may be necessary. However, for different urticaria subtypes and in view of individual variation in the course of the disease and response to treatment, additional or alternative therapies may be required. Immunosuppressive drugs like cyclosporin A and corticosteroids are not recommended for long-term treatment due to unavoidable severe adverse effects. This guideline was, in addition, accepted by the European Dermatology Forum (EDF) and formally approved by the European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS).