How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

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HomerJ
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How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by HomerJ » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:23 am

Wife is experiencing chronic hives, and the only thing that helps is prednisone steroids.

The doctors we have seen have been completely unhelpful. Are they bad doctors or does medical science really have zero clue how to treat this?

Is there a good way to find the best doctors in this field? We looked at the Mayo clinic's website, found a guy, but he's not available until mid-Sept, and it's $5000 just for a consult (we're checking to see if insurance will pay). We'd absolutely be willing to pay whatever amount of money if the guy can help, but I'm wondering if there any other resources available to a layperson to find a good doctor for a condition like this?
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antiqueman
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by antiqueman » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:28 am

Had same problem. Allergist solved problem. I take a certain shot monthly. PM and I will give you details

Rupert
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Rupert » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:44 am

We can't give medical advice here, so I will keep this very general. What sort of doctors have you seen? One might see a primary care doctor, a dermatologist, or an allergist for hives. If you haven't yet seen one of those types of doctors, I'd start there.

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HomerJ
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by HomerJ » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:51 am

Yeah, I know one can't give medical advice, but I'm curious how one finds a good specialist.

Sure, we've asked our family doctor, but the guy he referred us to is terrible.
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Rupert
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Rupert » Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:56 am

HomerJ wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:51 am
Yeah, I know one can't give medical advice, but I'm curious how one finds a good specialist.

Sure, we've asked our family doctor, but the guy he referred us to is terrible.
Word of mouth. Ask your friends, neighbors, colleagues, etc., if they have an allergist or dermatologist they like.

Dottie57
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:01 am

Find an allergist. Hives are generally caused by allergies.

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capitalG
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by capitalG » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:06 am

Sounds terrible but is unfortunately more common than you think. Go visit your local allergist, they can discuss a few options that can help including the one antiqueman refers to. If you have insurance, it should cover most of the cost of the medication. Hope she finds relief soon,

capG

inbox788
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by inbox788 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:23 am

HomerJ wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:51 am
Yeah, I know one can't give medical advice, but I'm curious how one finds a good specialist.

Sure, we've asked our family doctor, but the guy he referred us to is terrible.
What do you mean by terrible? Have you gone back to the family doctor and discussed this? Why did he pick this specialist, and can he refer to another? It's worth finding out now if you also need to find another family doctor.

There may be a communications or understand gap on your part. Go back and re-read the Mayo clinic article to get a better understanding and expectations of how some of these things work out. Make a diary of the problems/exposures/treatments and being it to discuss with your family doctor/specialist. There's a chance the "good" specialist is just the lucky one that coincides with the receding of the symptoms. Also, don't overlook environmental factors and interventions that may help mitigate the suffering.

https://www.everydayhealth.com/hs/chron ... ves-diary/

brandy
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by brandy » Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:52 am

antiqueman wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 10:28 am
Had same problem. Allergist solved problem. I take a certain shot monthly. PM and I will give you details
I too have a suggestion. PM me for information.

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GoldStar
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by GoldStar » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:21 pm

The thing about specialists is that they are specialists.
If you go to a dermatologist they might not understand allergic reactions and vice-versa. How do you know what specialists to see?
My experience with specialists is the old saying: If all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail.
I would start with a good generalist.

mhalley
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by mhalley » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:33 pm

You could use this site to find an allergist near you. Look for one affiliated with a medical school.
https://acaai.org/locate-an-allergist

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:44 pm

Yes - one key is the right kind of "specialist" - since (in my experience) there can be similar symptoms that may be dealt with by different specialists. There are some overlapping specialties as well.

When consulting any Physician about this - make a full list of all things you are taking - prescriptions, over the counter, supplements - and dietary patterns. One common cause of hives is drug reactions.

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:46 pm

GoldStar wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:21 pm
The thing about specialists is that they are specialists.
If you go to a dermatologist they might not understand allergic reactions and vice-versa. How do you know what specialists to see?
My experience with specialists is the old saying: If all you have is a hammer everything looks like a nail.
I would start with a good generalist.
Yes --- fortunately this has not been my recent health experience - but happened in the past.

LK2012
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by LK2012 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:51 pm

If you can't find a good doctor by personal referrals, I like to use this site, because it includes actual patient reviews: https://www.ratemds.com/

Some of the other ratings use recommendations by other doctors, but I want to know the patient experience.

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:02 pm

LK2012 wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:51 pm
If you can't find a good doctor by personal referrals, I like to use this site, because it includes actual patient reviews: https://www.ratemds.com/
Some of the other ratings use recommendations by other doctors, but I want to know the patient experience.
I place close to zero credibility on patient reviews - over the years I have encountered a few physicians I would rate very low - yet when I read these patient reviews - they often get outstanding patient reviews. My (lay person's) opinion is that physicians who tell patients what they want to hear get good reviews (even if the advice is not medically sound - such as "Don't worry about being 50 pounds overweight!")

adamthesmythe
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by adamthesmythe » Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:04 pm

You haven't said whether she has been to an allergist.

We can't give medical advice...but...is a recommendation to see an allergist medical advice?

You don't want to be taking prednisone indefinitely unless there is really no other choice.

By the way...some allergic problems can disappear without even an allergist having an idea what caused them.

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Hayden
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Hayden » Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:05 pm

I went through this too. I saw several doctors, none of which helped. One doctor told me that this is extremely common and that most of the time they never identify the cause. In my case, they stopped on their own. Hope you have the same result!

Miriam2
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Miriam2 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 1:49 pm

Completely agree with mhalley up-post - find a dermatologist and/or allergist affiliated with a large medical school and use their clinic or hospital services. The doctor will be accompanied by new young doctors/residents eager to solve your medical mystery.

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HomerJ
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by HomerJ » Fri Jun 22, 2018 2:34 pm

Thanks for all the advice. We will check out those websites.

And many many thanks to all those who sent me PMs.. I really appreciate it. Makes my wife feel a little better to see others had/have the same issue and how they dealt with it!

You guys are the best!
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HIinvestor
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by HIinvestor » Fri Jun 22, 2018 3:02 pm

Agree that allergist and dermatologist help deal with allergies and hives. I've mostly relied upon the allergist and she's been helpful. It can take some digging/exploring to figure out what the allergy/allergies are and how to minimize exposures. The more exposure is reduced, the better patients can tolerate the lessened exposures.

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Fri Jun 22, 2018 3:26 pm

Also, look for foods that might be causing the problem.

Katietsu
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by Katietsu » Fri Jun 22, 2018 3:45 pm

While you wait for medical help, do try to limit exposure to things that could cause an allergic reaction and keep a journal. We just solved my friend’s case of hives after a month by going through a list of products to determine what changed recently. In this case, it was a new moisturizer. My nephew was experiencing hives from exposure to a type of grass in the backyard. It took four months and use of steroids before we figured that out. If it were me, I would not have anything with a fragrance in the house at all, be it shampoo or a vase of flowers. Limit the number of personal care products. Eliminate as many cleaning products as possible. Consider diet and food allergies. Consider hobbies, eg gardening.

brandy
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by brandy » Fri Jun 22, 2018 4:23 pm

+1

AND, it may not be just one item, chemical, fragrance. One item may cause one part of a reaction, other items may contribute to it too, increasing severity strength, or length of time it lasts.
You said chronic, so maybe something you added a while ago. Before the hives. A do-able, and easy start would be to remove all
fragrance products from the house, maybe to the garage or shed--a place she is not likely to go. That means personal care, laundry, household fragranced products--cleaners, sanitizers, incenses, candles, air fresheners, etc. (There are fragrance free alternatives, which are usually less expensive.)
Products in use prior to the hives may have new formulations, including different ingredients.

Is there a time the hives are less irritating, or almost gone? What is the difference in the day before, and at that time?

Best wishes. It will take some investigating to determine what is causing this reaction.

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:20 am

My wife got hives as a reaction to antibiotics.

I have also heard of folks getting hives from being allergic to physical contact with spouse/partner. Sometimes it has been a reaction to medications the spouse/partner is taking. One of those "funny" but not so "funny" medical situations.

mouses
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by mouses » Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:40 am

LK2012 wrote:
Fri Jun 22, 2018 12:51 pm
If you can't find a good doctor by personal referrals, I like to use this site, because it includes actual patient reviews: https://www.ratemds.com/

Some of the other ratings use recommendations by other doctors, but I want to know the patient experience.
Ratemds used to be a good site, but they sold it a few years back and now it has a terrible interface that makes it hard to find information. I gave up on it after struggling several times to find specialists near me. It used to be that it would display a list that you could sort by ratings, distance etc. and the reviews were a click away for each doctor on the list.

I don't know why so many websites are having their interfaces wrecked the last few years.

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dm200
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Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Post by dm200 » Sat Jun 23, 2018 12:57 pm

dm200 wrote:
Sat Jun 23, 2018 10:20 am
My wife got hives as a reaction to antibiotics.
I have also heard of folks getting hives from being allergic to physical contact with spouse/partner. Sometimes it has been a reaction to medications the spouse/partner is taking. One of those "funny" but not so "funny" medical situations.
A few years ago, my wife claimed that she was "allergic" to me after I started a certain BP drug. The doctor said it was nonsense. I stopped the drug for a bit - and did not tell my wife. She then volunteered that she was not "allergic". So, I switched drugs. Years later, a different physician told me that was a potential known side effect of that drug.

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