ABSTRACT: The Italian Board on Urticaria has prepared a document focusing on the definition and classification of urticaria, taking into account the recent progress in identifying the causes, eliciting factors, and pathomechanisms of this disease. As urticaria has a profound impact on the quality of life, effective treatment is important. Therefore, specific treatment options for the management of urticaria are evaluated on the basis of the recent literature. Non-sedating H(1) antihistamines are recommended as the first-line treatment as they have proven effective in several randomized double-blind controlled studies. Dosages higher than those recommended may be necessary in some cases. However, additional or alternative therapies may be required for different urticaria subtypes and in view of individual variations in the course of the disease and response to treatment. Immunosuppressive drugs such as corticosteroids are not recommended for long-term treatment due to unavoidable, severe adverse effects.
Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 07/2009; 144(3):297-311.