You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor or a general practitioner. However, in some cases when you call to set up an appointment, you may be referred immediately to a doctor who specializes in skin conditions (dermatologist) or one who specializes in allergies (allergist).
Here's some information to help you prepare for your appointment.
What you can do
At the time you make the appointment, be sure to ask if there's anything you need to do in advance, such as not take antihistamines for several days beforehand.
You may also want to:
- Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins or supplements you're taking.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, including:
Dec. 06, 2012
- When did you begin experiencing symptoms?
- Were your symptoms preceded by an illness or a new medication?
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- How severe are your symptoms?
- Do you have allergies? To what?
- Do you have dry skin or any other skin conditions?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
- Habif TP. Clinical Dermatology: A Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy. 5th ed. Edinburgh, U.K.; New York, N.Y.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-7234-3541-9..X0001-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-7234-3541-9&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Oct. 4, 2012.
- Kliegman RM, et al. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 19th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2011. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/208746819-6/0/1608/0.html. Accessed Oct. 4, 2012.
- Dice JP, et al. Physical urticarias. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Oct. 4, 2012.
- Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com/resourceTOC.aspx?resourceID=740. Accessed Oct. 4, 2012.
- Adkinson NF, et al. Middleton's Allergy: Principles and Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2009. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/page.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05659-5..00061-9--cesec9&isbn=978-0-323-05659-5&sid=1363424664&uniqId=370214287-3#4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05659-5..00061-9--cesec9. Accessed Oct. 4, 2012.
- Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Oct. 18, 2012.