Methods of search2

Any RCT (meta-analysis, systematic review or Cochrane review) on "acute" and "urticaria" or "hive" or "wheal" or "nettle and rash" in electronic databases and time periods as indicated in Chapter 6.

QUESTIONS

Which drugs are efficient and safe in the treatment of acute urticaria?

The search of the Cochrane Library and the other electronic databases did not reveal a systematic review or meta-analysis on acute urticaria. Recently a consensus report on the management of urticaria appeared as a result of a panel discussion during the clinically oriented European Society for Dermatological Research's symposium Urticaria 2000.3 Besides the elimination of eliciting stimuli, non-sedating H1 antihistamines were recommended as standard and initial treatment, with prednisolone 50 mg/day for 3 days as alternative treatment. A further review, which appeared in 2001, describes the evidence-based evaluation of antihistamines in the treatment of urticaria.4 The paragraph on acute urticaria discusses two studies, which will also be presented in this chapter.2,5

Further search was restricted to RCTs. The Cochrane Library listed seven such trials with acute urticaria as primary endpoint of the intervention and not as a reported side-effect. Three further trials were identified in other databases. These trials are summarised in Table 21.1.

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