Urticaria pigmentosa is a skin disease that is frequently marked by the appearance of skin lesions and itching. This is a kind of mastocytosis, a disease that results in the production of an abundance of inflammatory cells known as mast cells.
Though urticaria pigmentosa can develop in anyone, it is most commonly found in children. The most common treatments involve the use of over-the-counter antihistamines, but severe cases may require the use of prescription medication.
The most tell-tale sign of urticaria pigmentosa is the development of bumps or lesions that commonly has a brown color. If the affected area is rubbed, it will produce more bumps that are similar to hives. Fluid-filled blisters may develop as well, particularly in young children that have a tendency to scratch their itchy lesions.
In most cases, the face can become flushed during an outbreak of urticaria pigmentosa. Though rare, severe symptoms can appear in people suffering from severe cases of urticaria pigmentosa. Examples of some symptoms include diarrhea and headache.
Some individuals may experience increased, rapid heartbeats, known as tachycardia. Sometimes fainting may also occur. These symptoms need to be reported to a doctor immediately so that treatment can be administered before life-threatening symptoms develop.
The most common and accurate tests to diagnose urticaria pigmentosa are urine and skin tests. The skin test is administered to identify if there is an abundance of mast cells in the body. The urine test is performed to measure how much histamine is present. Histamine is a chemical produced naturally in the body that affects the immune systems reaction to allergens.
In most cases, urticaria pigmentosa heals on its own sometime during puberty. In other cases, the disease will simply subside as the affected individual ages. In very rare cases, this skin condition may affect adults and develop into a more serious medical issue. Thus, frequent check-ups with a doctor is highly recommended.
Certain medications have been proven to elicit flare-ups of this skin condition in some individuals. A doctor needs to be sought out immediately if this is believed to be the case. Those who suffer from urticaria pigmentosa have a greater likelihood of experiencing an allergic reaction to a bee sting.
As such, many physicians will prescribe a syringe that injects epinephrine, known as an EpiPen. One should inject themselves with the EpiPen if adverse reactions occur after being stung by a bee. Even after using this medication, one should still seek medical attention to ensure that they have successfully recovered.