Aquagenic Urticaria: Water Allergy

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Aquagenic urticaria, also known as water urticaria and aquagenous urticaria, is a very rare skin disorder that causes a painful reaction to the body when in contact with water. The condition usually causes the skin to itch and burn after being exposed to water of any kind. The skin may develop hives which are itchy, raised bumps. Showers may result in severely dry eyes and soreness. Higher water temperatures tend to expedite the formation of hives. Shortness of breath or swelling in the throat can occur when drinking water. The pain usually persists for between 10–120 minutes.

Although the exact triggers for the condition are unknown, many practitioners in the field believe that the rashes are caused by histamines – or chemicals – released by mast cells in the skin when by our bodies when we have a reaction, in this case when skin makes contact with water. Antihistamine drugs or steroids may provide some relief for the itching caused by the welts, but there is no cure.

Only around 30-40 people worldwide are thought to have been diagnosed with the condition, which was first described in 1964.

Source: Daily Mail UK