The U Within Association recently held the First Patient Summit at a local hotel in Karachi to recognize the champions fighting severe skin disease, Urticaria.
The event was attended by consultants, dermatologists, patients, members of the association and people from the corporate sector.
The objective of the summit was to provide voice and courage to patients suffering from severe skin disease and to create awareness of this widespread problem.
The Public Relations of the summit was done by Starlinks PR & Events as part of their CSR initiatives.
Chaired by famous television host/anchor and social activist Dr Muzna Ebrahim, The U Within Association is a patient welfare organization that was created two years ago with the aim of training both patients and doctors to deal with various skin diseases prevailing in the country and to create awareness about them, with a special focus on urticaria and psoriasis.
At present, association is lobbying with pharmaceuticals companies and the government sector for the provision of free/subsidized medicines for deserving patients.
Talking to the Summit Dr Muzna Ebrahim told the audience that U Within Association was trying that the treatment and medicine for skin disease patients are provided free or on subsidized rates for the needy patients, and for this they were collecting funds.
At the occasion, dermatologist Dr Najia Ashraf highlighted about the newer treatment options available for patients today like biologics that result in 90 percent to 100 percent clear skin in some cases.
“The disease has treatment but it is a prolonged and continuous process.”
Dr Najia shared that 45 percent patients get into depression when battling with the disease that is why suicide rates were also there.
She said that this disease brings social dilemmas with it like rejection for marriage, general looks, and socialization with others.
She informed the audience that the disease is not contagious. “Though most of the patients have a wrong conception that this disease can be transferred into their partners or children, but it is not transferable in any case like using the same utensils and cloths of patient and by touching them.”
Dr Najia said that urticaria can also involve internal organs and a patent is always at the verge of getting diseases like diabetes, arthritis and heart problems.
Urticaria which is commonly known as Hives, pitti uchalna, or chapaki is an outbreak of swollen, pale red bumps patches, or the sudden appearance of red or white welts on the skin… either as a result of allergies or for the other reasons that at times are unknown.
Hives generally cause extreme itching, burning, and stinging. They usually appear on the face, lips, and ears and even on tongue repeatedly in a matter of hours. The welts vary in size and may even join together and make a large ‘plaque’ that takes few hours or days to fade.
Up to 20 percent people worldwide develop chronic urticaria at some point in their life. Women, between the ages of 20 to 40 are most likely to develop the disease.