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Is my skin allergy due to exposure to cold?

Q: I am a 37-year-old female suffering from cold and skin itching for the past seven years. I saw a skin doctor who prescribed me cetrizine and Bzone tablets. There is severe itching in my hands, legs, waist, and abdomen, especially in early morning and evening to night. For my cold and cough, the ENT specialist gave me Levocet D with Rekool D (as I am prone to acidity). I am a chemist by profession. Is my skin allergy due to exposure to cold wind and chemicals?

A:The condition you describe may be cold-induced urticaria. It can often be confirmed by holding an ice cube on the skin at the front of the forearm for about five minutes, and then waiting to see if a weal develops at the test site over the following 10 minutes or so. Cold urticaria usually recovers quickly once the affected skin warms up. Antihistamines like cetirizine may help if you cant avoid getting cold. People with cold urticaria should not swim or bathe in cold water or windy conditions unless they are accompanied, since widespread urticaria can cause a drop in blood pressure and even loss of consciousness. It sometimes improves after some years.


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