Monday, November 18, 2013

How Could Winter Be Worse?

It is cold outside my window. It is cold and windy and icky and the cold is coming in through the cracks and my life is brrrrrr.

At least I'm not allergic.

Yes, there is actually an allergy to cold. Not a 'I don't like this weather, where's the plane to San Diego' "allergy". A literal allergy, called cold urticaria, that can cause hives, swelling and potentially anaphylactic shock. If you suffer from it, it's not only winter that will get you, a drink with ice cubes in it will get you too. Swimming in cold water can be deadly. For the person profiled in the linked article, anything under 50 degrees Fahrenheit will trigger the allergy.

It can generally be treated, though, with antihistamines and an epi-pen; however, the condition is rare enough that it doesn't attract very much attention from the medical community, which of course is more focused on things that affect a greater amount of people. So any fundraising and research would have to be on the grassroots level. When an official diagnosis is given, and it's a child that gets it, their teachers may very well have to be convinced that, yes, this is in fact a thing, and no, he's not just trying to get out of going to class.

There is an article about it at the Mayo Clinic website, so there is at least that.

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