Chronic Idiopathic and Chronic Autoimmune Urticaria: Clinical and Immunopathological Features of 68 Subjects
Skintests with autologous serum elicit an immediate wheal-and-flareresponse in about 30-50% of chronic idiopathic urticaria subjects,suggesting that an autoimmune mechanism might be involved in thepathogenesis of this disease. The aim of the present work, involving 68subjects with chronic idiopathic urticaria, was to distinguish betweenthe serum-positive and serum-negative cases and highlight the clinicaldifferences between the two groups on the basis of the Breneman scalescore. We also tried to correlate the finding of a positive response tothe autologous serum skin test with other autoimmune diatheses or fullydeveloped autoimmune disorders. Our results did not demonstrate anysignificant differences between the two groups with regard to mean age,sex distribution, angioedema and mucosal/cutaneous atopy. However, allsubjects with positive autologous serum skin test presented more severeclinical features than serum-negative subjects. We found no differencesbetween the two groups in the incidence of autoimmune disease.