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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 796-804

Hereditary angioedema: Diagnostic algorithm and current treatment concepts

1 Department of Pediatrics, Advanced Pediatrics Centre, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Sunil Dogra
Professor, Department of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh - 160 012
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/idoj.idoj_398_21

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Hereditary angioedema (HAE) is an uncommon disorder with a global prevalence of approximately 1 in 10,000 to 1 in 50,000 population. This disease is grossly underrecognized in India because of lack of awareness and/or lack of diagnostic facilities. Clinical manifestations include swelling over face, eyes, lips, hands, feet, and genitals, abdominal pain, and life-threatening laryngeal edema. HAE should be suspected in all patients who present with angioedema without wheals and who do not respond to antihistamines and/or steroids. C1 levels, C1-INH levels, and C1-INH function should be checked in all patients suspected to have HAE. C1q levels should be assessed in patients with suspected autoimmune-mediated acquired angioedema. Management of HAE constitutes the treatment of acute attack and short-term and long-term prophylaxis. Because of lack of all first-line recommended medications, the management of HAE in India is a challenging task. Patients are managed using fresh frozen plasma (acute treatment), tranexamic acid, and attenuated androgens (prophylaxis). Even though attenuated androgens have been shown to be effective in the prevention of attacks of HAE, the side effect profile especially in children and in females is a serious concern. Hence, the treatment needs to be individualized considering the risk-benefit ratio of long-term prophylaxis. In this review, we provide an overview of diagnostic strategy for patients with HAE and the current treatment concepts with emphasis on currently available treatment options in resource-constrained settings.

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