Do traditional beliefs about urticaria affect patient satisfaction in South India? – A knowledge, attitude and practices survey

Puspanjuli Sahu, Saritha Mohanan, V. Aravindan, C. Udayashankar


Introduction Chronic urticaria is a distressing condition with a prevalence of 0.5-1% in the population. The factors affecting treatment and physician satisfaction and quality of life are not studied well in Indian patients, in whom traditional beliefs abound.


Materials and Methods A cross sectional survey was administered to consecutive patients of chronic urticaria over a six-month period. The survey included questions on previous treatment, their beliefs about the disease, treatment satisfaction (Likert scale), satisfaction with physician and the Dermatological life quality index (DLQI). Logistic regression was done to analyse the independent predictors of treatment satisfaction.


Results We included 52 patients with chronic urticaria in our study. In 47 patients, the disease affected their daily life. Fifteen patients believed that their urticaria was related to the lunar cycle. 47 patients were satisfied with daily antihistamines. Age, education, belief about the moon, discussion about diagnosis and treatment were not found to be predictors of treatment satisfaction.


Conclusion Strong beliefs about the cause of urticaria, probably region-specific, exist in Indian patients of chronic urticaria. Despite these beliefs, patients are satisfied with intake of daily antihistamines for their urticaria, especially if they are educated about the nature of the disease and the necessity and safety of daily medicines.



Urticaria, quality of life, treatment satisfaction, tropical dermatology, attitude

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