Hives

Hives are very itchy, warm, red raised bumps or welts with pale centers.  Hives vary in size from 1/4 inch to several inches across.  They are usually worse where thechild is warm (under the arms, worse after bathing, or after being bundled).  Hives can migrate—a spot may disappear and new spots may emerge over a short time.  Hives are caused by histamine in the skin. 

 Hives can be caused by various things

  • Medicines, especially antibiotics
  • Foods such as nuts, eggs, fish or shell fish
  • Something touched, such as a plant, latex, etc.
  • Infections
  • Having cold air or water on the skin
  • Insect stings
  • Unknown- often hives are idiopathic, or the trigger is unknown.

 

WHAT TO DO:

  • If your child is acting well, with no breathing problems and no itchiness, simply observe
  • If your child is bothered by hives an antihistamine, like Benadryl is the best medication.  It doesn’t cure the hives but will reduce their number and relieve itching.  You can buy it over the counter.  The main side effect is drowsiness.  Give Benadryl four times daily in the following dosages. Most hives will linger an average of 4-6 days.

 

Child’s   Wt. More than:

22lbs

33lbs

44lbs

55lbs

110lbs

Total   amount (mg)

10mg

15mg

20mg

25mg

50mg

Liquid   12.5mg/5ml (tsp)

¾   tsp

1   tsp

1   ½ tsp

2   tsp

-----

Chewable   12.5mg

-----

1

1   ½

2

4

Capsules   25mg

-----

-----

-----

1

2

AVOIDANCE:

Avoid anything that you think might have caused the hives.  If your child is on an antibiotic, stop the medicine and call the office during regular office hours for further advice.  For localized hives, wash the allergic substance off the skin with soap and water.  Localized hives usually disappear in a few hours lessening the need for oral treatment.

 WHEN TO CALL:

 During office hours if:

  • The itch is not controlled after your child has been taking continuous Benadryl for 24 hours.
  • The hives last more than 1 week
  • You have other questions or concerns

 Immediately if:

  • Breathing or swallowing become difficult, nausea and vomiting, cramps or stomach pain, itchy or swollen lips and throat
  • Your child starts acting very sick

 

Here is some information from the American Academy of Pediatrics

http://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/aap-press-room-media-center/Pages/Hives.aspx

Call or Visit

  • phone: (616) 243-9515

  • FAX: (616) 243-1815

  • after hours: (616) 776-7401

  • or contact us via the Patient Portal

  • Alger Pediatrics
    733 Alger St. SE
    Grand Rapids, MI 49507