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April 5, 1985

Loa loaAn Unusual Case of Chronic Urticaria and Angioedema in the United States

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Allergic Diseases and Internal Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn (Dr Van Dellen); the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (Dr Ottesen); and The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Washington, DC (Mr Neafie). Dr Gocke is in private practice in Jupiter, Fla.

JAMA. 1985;253(13):1924-1925. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350370120036

THE CAUSE of chronic urticaria and angioedema remains unknown in many instances. We report a case in which the cause was found to be a filarial infection with Loa loa.

Report of a Case  A 49-year-old woman from Maine came to Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn, in July 1979 with a chief complaint of intermittent swellings for 14 months. In June 1977, she wakened with swelling of the left eyelid, which lasted two days. She assumed that she had been stung or bitten. One month later, swelling of the other eyelid occurred. Following this she had recurrent, painless swelling, at times pruritic, in various parts of the body. The swellings became more frequent and involved the eyes, cheeks, face, forearms, wrists, and trunk. The swellings lasted two to three days and occurred several times weekly. With the swellings she described typical urticaria. On at least one occasion, the patient noted "strangling"