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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Aquagenic pruritus


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Overview

Aquagenic pruritus is a condition in which contact with water of any temperature causes intense itching without any visible skin changes. The symptoms may begin immediately after contact with water and can last for an hour or more.[1] The cause of aquagenic pruritus is unknown; however, familial cases have been described.[1][2] It may be a symptom of polycythemia vera or other diseases. Therefore, a thorough evaluation should be performed to rule out other more serious conditions. Overall, treatment is a challenge. Antihistamines, UVB phototherapy, PUVA therapy and various medications have been tried with varying success.[1]
Last updated: 6/20/2016

References

  1. Sekar CS, Srinivas CR & Jacob S. Aquagenic pruritus: beneath water "lies". Indian J Dermatol. 2011 Jul; 56(4):446-7. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3179019/.
  2. Cao T, Yong AA, Tan KB, Tey HL. Idiopathic aquagenic pruritus: pathogenesis and effective treatment with atenolol.. Dermatol Ther. 2015 May-Jun; 28(3):118-21. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25640024.
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Basic Information

  • The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) has a report for patients and families about this condition. NORD is a patient advocacy organization for individuals with rare diseases and the organizations that serve them.

In Depth Information

  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Aquagenic pruritus. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.