Finally got the hives under to wean off high dosages of antihistamines

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Hoping that everyone is well and also getting their hives under control. I totally understand how debilitating it is and how it affects quality of life!

I am in South Africa and the cost of consultations for Allergy doctors are super high(partly covered by medical aid here), the cost of Xolair is R10000 each injection (also not covered by medical aid/insurance here) and there are limited information and even lesser support from Doctors. The individual nature of chronic urticaria makes it more difficult to manage as well.

I have chronic urticaria for the last 2.5 months and only managed to get it under control for the last week by adding cimetidine 400mg at night (i mainly get them at night).

My current treatment regime is as follows:

2 x fexo 180mg in the morning

2 x xyzal/levocetirizine at night

1 x cimetidine 400mg at night

1 x montelukast 10 mg at night

I would appreciate any advise on how to wean myself off these high dosages as it is super costly here in SA and the meds always make me super drowsy as well.

Is it just trial an error? I am planning to slowly remove for example montelukast this Friday and see the results on Saturday.

Then I would like to try swopping fexo for another antihistamine as fexo is the most expensive here (almost 3 x more expensive than the other antihistamines).

Thank you. I look forward to hearing from anyone and your time and advise is much much appreciated!!!

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  • Edited

    I am sorry to hear of your plight with insurance.

    You sound like you are on the same extreme regiment of many pills that I was on. I am now starting Xolair and it looks very promising so far.

    Have you tried going to Xolair's assistance program? You can apply on their website. If they do not have it in your country, I would write them an e-mail and see if there is some way that they can help you. It was the only way I could afford it as well but it is making a real difference. I did the tons of antihistamines and the montelukast, the xyzal, the benadryl, the claritin, the zyrtec. The Xolair is the first thing to make a difference. My swells also got very BIG and painful. It ruined my life for 3 years until I finally just tried reaching out to the Xolair Assistance Program.

    Go to Xolair website, try 'Financial Support Options'. And if you can't find something, try to contact them directly. If you want to try it. It was very pain free and easy.

    I wish you the best of luck and hope that you find your cure.

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    • Edited

      Dearest Likely_Odd

      Thank you so much for your response and kind recommendations.

      Unfortunately, in South Africa there is no financial assistance for the Xolair as well as the Allergist firstly has to determine if it is severe enough to warrant Xolair and we then have to pay cash for the injections.

      Thankfully, it is the first week of relief after trying so many different types of antihistamines and I am hoping I can continue managing it until the hives disappear altogether ( i had read that The main focus of treatment is trying to alleviate symptoms while the urticaria slowly “burns” itself out and eventually clears – a process that may take many months or even some year- different for everyone!)

      I appreciate your kindness and offer to write an email on my behalf and i am extremely happy to hear that the Xolair is making a difference for you,especially since you suffered so much with it for 3 years!

      Wishing you all the best too and hope that we all will be hive-free soon!!!

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    • Posted

      That is so good to hear that you are starting to see some results. I was worried for you and trying my best to come up with some plan in case it doesn't work.

      Remain hopeful! Many people only suffer from this for a short period of time. I hope that you are one of the people that it simply goes away for. But I can tell you that you are on the right track! Xolair is only a "last result" of sorts. So you are doing the right thing. You may just have it clear one day and never have it come back if the meds do their jobs.

      Bless you and I hope you are healed. Good luck in your struggle. ❤️ And take good care of yourself.

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    • Posted

      Aww thank you so so much for your concern, recommendations and blessings, not many would care for a total stranger! and not many understand what it is to go through this day after day!

      I will continue with my high dosages of antihistamines and slowly try to eliminate montelukast and then slowly drop dosages of antihistamines as well (just wish there was more info on how to wean ourselves off) I am hoping and praying that mine will go away soon as well. I have read that chronic urticaria lasts 1 -5 years and sometimes longer (praying that we will all be hive-free soon though).

      Wishing you all the very best as well. May you be abundantly blessed for your kindness and be hive-free soon soon! Take good care 😃

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