5 doctors weighed in:

Why are doctors recommending Zantac (ranitidine) for an allergic reaction or hives?

5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Peter Kurzweil
Internal Medicine
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Good question

Hives (or urticaria) represent a sensitivity to something dilating the small vessels under the skin, causing a raised pink lesion; if u press on it, it will blanch, let it go it pinks up again.
Many causes: foods, chemicals, perfumes, very often stress. Stress can increase acid formation in stomach, Zantac (ranitidine) reduces it. Over 50% of time, one can't find cause. I treat initially c antihistamines.

In brief: Good question

Hives (or urticaria) represent a sensitivity to something dilating the small vessels under the skin, causing a raised pink lesion; if u press on it, it will blanch, let it go it pinks up again.
Many causes: foods, chemicals, perfumes, very often stress. Stress can increase acid formation in stomach, Zantac (ranitidine) reduces it. Over 50% of time, one can't find cause. I treat initially c antihistamines.
Dr. Peter Kurzweil
Dr. Peter Kurzweil
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1 comment
Dr. Ralph Morgan Lewis
possibly because it is a histamine H2-receptor blocker
Dr. Steven Machtinger
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology

In brief: Antihistamine also

Zantac is an antihistamine primarily effective for the histamine receptors in your stomach.
They're called h-2 receptors. The histamine receptors in your blood vessels & nerve endings are primarily h-1 receptors with some h-2 receptors. When h-1 active anthistamines like Benadryl (diphenhydramine) or Allegra are not sufficient to control hives Zantac can be added for a little extra control. Alone it's not very good.

In brief: Antihistamine also

Zantac is an antihistamine primarily effective for the histamine receptors in your stomach.
They're called h-2 receptors. The histamine receptors in your blood vessels & nerve endings are primarily h-1 receptors with some h-2 receptors. When h-1 active anthistamines like Benadryl (diphenhydramine) or Allegra are not sufficient to control hives Zantac can be added for a little extra control. Alone it's not very good.
Dr. Steven Machtinger
Dr. Steven Machtinger
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Dr. Andrew Murphy
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology

In brief: Antihistamine

Hives are typically, we think, a histamine driven reaction.
There are several different type of histamine receptor. Zantac (ranitidine) is a medicine that blocks the stomach histamine receptor that produces acid. Hence its effectiveness in acid reflux disease. In some patients blocking both the skin histamine receptor and the stomach histamine receptor helps with their hives.

In brief: Antihistamine

Hives are typically, we think, a histamine driven reaction.
There are several different type of histamine receptor. Zantac (ranitidine) is a medicine that blocks the stomach histamine receptor that produces acid. Hence its effectiveness in acid reflux disease. In some patients blocking both the skin histamine receptor and the stomach histamine receptor helps with their hives.
Dr. Andrew Murphy
Dr. Andrew Murphy
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