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Old 12-09-2007, 01:16 AM   #1
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Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

Last Sunday, I woke up with huge bumps on my lower body that were extremely itchy, red, hard, flat, and hot. Never having experienced or seen anything like this, I panicked. I also got very dizzy and had trouble breathing for a good three-five minutes. I have no history of allergy to anything - food, weather, dirt, dust, nothing. My husband took me to the hospital, I was treated for hives, and was told to take Claritin once per day. The hives went away for the rest of the day. The next night I was awakened by terrible upper body muscle aches, and a sharp pain in my chest, behind my chest bone. The hives bumps also reappeared in the morning. All these symptoms then went away for the remainder of the day. The same occurred the next day, with the terrible muscle aches and sharp chest pain and bumps that then disappeared. The third day, however, I woke up with the left half of my face completely swollen, and unable to move it. I went to the hospital again. I was told I had acid reflux and that the hives are causing the muscle pain, but that the swollen face was a mystery and that I should see an allergist. I was given pepcid for the acid reflux, and a steroid for the hives, and benadryl at night. The swelling went down, but then my lip became swollen for next few hours. Since then I've been getting the hives every morning and then they go away, but the acid reflux is just settling in (now it occurs throughout the day too) while the muscle pains have gone away completely, and have had two more lip swellings. What's also weird is that after that first day of itching, these bumps no longer itch at all although they appear every morning. They are there, swollen, and red, and ugly, but they don't itch. My problem is that I have had this acid reflux ever since I got this strange bout of hives and have no idea what to do about it (because the pepcid is not effective for the entire day) and when it'll go away. Nothing in my diet changed to bring this allergy about, I'm not allergic to anything that I know, and I literally did not change anything in my lifestyle - it's a complete mystery. I've been laying off the acidic stuff, as well as milk, but I'm still experiencing the hives in the morning and the acid reflux.

 
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Old 12-09-2007, 10:03 AM   #2
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

I hate to tell you but you can develop allergies overnight. Reading your narrative, it seems the hives come on after sleeping. That would indicate to me a dust mite allergy or an allergy to something you are only exposed to at night: the lotion you use before bedtime, the soap you wash the sheets and nightclothes in, etc.
I suggest seeing an allergist.

 
Old 12-09-2007, 10:27 AM   #3
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

Left half of face swollen.. do you sleep on that side? Press it into the pillow? I have gotten some pretty nasty swelling of the cheeks from allergic rashes (contact dermatitis). Eventually, I figured it was hair conditioner.

 
Old 12-10-2007, 08:28 AM   #4
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

Also look into your thyroid. That pain in the neck can fail or go hyper at anytime and cause issues. The main thing that you have to look into is autoimmune thyroid disorders. They are one of the last things checked.. but if you have a thyroid storm.. even a small one.. you can exhibit all the symptoms you described in flux cycles for days and dasy.. Treatment.. steriods and thyroid supplements as needed.

I had a mysterious thyroid flare where my allergies suddenly leaped out of control after 30 years in control and two separate allergy shot routines for two different states worth of allergens. It was Hashimoto's disease and thyroid based. My thyroid blood work was normal.. but my antibodies were off the over 10x the normal maximum. The TPOAb antibodies are known to cause hyperactive contact dermatitis issues and hives. The blood work you will need to request.. otherwise they will just do a TSH is.. a TSH, FT3, FT4, TPOAb, and TSI. This cover the two thyroid AI's and any other general thyroid conditions.

Do follow up with an allergist. It is true new allergies can develop at anytime as a result to periodic or constant exposure to an irritant.

Good luck.
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Old 12-10-2007, 08:11 PM   #5
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

Quote:
Originally Posted by olgai View Post
Last Sunday, I woke up with huge bumps on my lower body that were extremely itchy, red, hard, flat, and hot. Never having experienced or seen anything like this, I panicked. I also got very dizzy and had trouble breathing for a good three-five minutes. I have no history of allergy to anything - food, weather, dirt, dust, nothing. My husband took me to the hospital, I was treated for hives, and was told to take Claritin once per day. The hives went away for the rest of the day. The next night I was awakened by terrible upper body muscle aches, and a sharp pain in my chest, behind my chest bone. The hives bumps also reappeared in the morning. All these symptoms then went away for the remainder of the day. The same occurred the next day, with the terrible muscle aches and sharp chest pain and bumps that then disappeared. The third day, however, I woke up with the left half of my face completely swollen, and unable to move it. I went to the hospital again. I was told I had acid reflux and that the hives are causing the muscle pain, but that the swollen face was a mystery and that I should see an allergist. I was given pepcid for the acid reflux, and a steroid for the hives, and benadryl at night. The swelling went down, but then my lip became swollen for next few hours. Since then I've been getting the hives every morning and then they go away, but the acid reflux is just settling in (now it occurs throughout the day too) while the muscle pains have gone away completely, and have had two more lip swellings. What's also weird is that after that first day of itching, these bumps no longer itch at all although they appear every morning. They are there, swollen, and red, and ugly, but they don't itch. My problem is that I have had this acid reflux ever since I got this strange bout of hives and have no idea what to do about it (because the pepcid is not effective for the entire day) and when it'll go away. Nothing in my diet changed to bring this allergy about, I'm not allergic to anything that I know, and I literally did not change anything in my lifestyle - it's a complete mystery. I've been laying off the acidic stuff, as well as milk, but I'm still experiencing the hives in the morning and the acid reflux.
You need to see an allergist asap. An allergist will do a complete blood work up to eliminate any possible causes of hives. Epstein Barr is one of them that needs to be eliminated. Thyroid problems are another. Most likely it is an allergy and since it seems to happen in the morning, it may be from your bed sheets and pajamas. Try a process of elimination. The first step I would take is to rewash all your clothes and bedsheets (including your mattress pad) in a different laundry detergent.

 
Old 12-15-2007, 11:27 AM   #6
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

allergies can be created at any time in ones life.

maybe you have a food allergy. can you think about
the meal you had before bed time?

i have mold allergies and mold is in all kinds of foods
from cheese to breads with lots of yeast, and dried fruit.

perhaps it's time for allergy testing. it's time consuming
but you may be surprised... i found out that i was not
only allergic to mold, but dust, dust mites, feathers
and cats...

i was chronically ill all the time and unaware that my
symptoms were caused by sleeping on feather pillows
with a feather down comforter, and loads of cats in
the house, plus a special fondness for mushrooms,
cheese and dried fruit.

 
Old 12-24-2007, 12:56 PM   #7
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Re: Sudden hives, dizziness, acid reflux, shortness of breath, swollen face/lip

I am curious to know if you are in your 40s or 50s. I just had my first horrible attack of mystery hives and I know I am peri menopausal since I just had a blood test for it. Now I also just moved to North Carolina from California so I'm sure there are environmental factors but I am curious to see if all these women who keep posting about hives may also be having hormone fluctuations.

 
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