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Imagine you being able to drink but not letting the same get on your skin! Water is essential to life for everyone? But is it as precious as it should be for EVERYONE? Imagine you going to a pool party to enjoy and beat the heat by jumping into the pool, but you can’t! As you really cannot afford the physical hives that might appear as soon as you have contact with the essentials for life. Aquagenic Urticaria is a rare condition and a form of urticaria, that is a type of hive that causes rashes as soon as the one infected with the disease touches water. Water is not as life-saving for a few hundred in a million. People with this, can consume water but not let it get it onto their skin.

What Is Aquagenic Urticaria/Water Allergy?

Aquagenic Urticaria is an extremely rare form of urticaria, a form of hives that comes into existence as one comes in contact with water. It is a type of physical hive that entails itching and burning. People with aquagenic urticaria face life-disrupting allergy triggers on a rainy day or even a summer pool party. Though this condition is extremely rare. However the research done on the same is limited, Aquagenic hives are seen to be a water allergy and according to a report published in 2011, there are less than a hundred cases of Aquagenic urticaria that are reported in the medical literature. Hives from this condition can be triggered through various water sources that include rain, snow, sweat, and even tears! 

Signs & Symptoms

Aquagenic hive is a condition that can cause a lot of irritation like an itchy, pain-inflicting rash. Though commonly occurs on the neck, arms, and chest, it can appear anywhere on the human skin. As soon as one with this condition gets exposed to water, he or she can experience 

  1. Reddening of the skin
  2. Burning sensations
  3. Lesions
  4. Welts
  5. Inflammatory feel

In the cases of severity, even consumption of water can make you go through symptoms like rashes around the mouth difficulty while swallowing, wheezing, and even having difficulty breathing. 

Diagnoses

Your doctor to diagnose aquagenic urticaria will initially conduct a physical test to observe and analyze the symptoms. The doctor also might review the medical history you have had and even perform a water challenge test. In the test, the doctor shall apply a water compress of 95°F (35°C) probably on the upper region of your body and this in turn might or might not trigger a reaction and the trigger should begin within 15 minutes or so. The doctor shall record the reaction and might compare the same to the symptoms of Aquagenic pruritus which is a condition that might cause irritation and itching but wouldn’t cause urticaria or reddening of the skin.

Any Treatment?

Unfortunately, there is no cure at present for this condition. However medical science can provide the people who suffer from the same with treatment options that can help to alleviate the symptoms. Medications called Antihistamines are used to treat anti-allergy-like symptoms, So in turn the doctor may recommend you the same medication to calm your hives after one comes into contact with water. 

In severe cases of Aquagenic urticaria, when one cannot or is not able to breathe, he or she might need an EpiPen. EpiPen contains epinephrine commonly called adrenaline. They are used as an emergency alternative in case of severe allergic reactions. They function to increase the pressure of blood to reduce the swelling and hives and also aid the lungs to function when they are constricted. 

Water Allergy
Water Allergy

Prevention?

Once you get aware of the oblivion, that is, receive the diagnoses from your doctor you should try not to come into contact with water. This is highly unusual to do but obviously, precautions are really necessary to avoid the pain-inflicting hives. You can try restricting your contact with water as much as you can by taking brief showers, taking into account the weather, putting on moisture-wicking clothes, and even resistance to food that contains high content of water like watermelon, cucumber, etc. It can be incredibly frustrating, annoyingly painful, and exhaustive, but it’s always good to have friends and family who take care of you and your needs. So never feel unlucky about it and face the same head-on!

Also Read: Beat Your Allergy With Ayurveda