Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Share this article on:

An Update on Hereditary Angioedema

Verdi, Marylee BSN, RN; Shaker, Marcus MD, MS

Advanced Emergency Nursing Journal: April/June 2011 - Volume 33 - Issue 2 - p 163–178
doi: 10.1097/TME.0b013e318217b015
Cases of Note

Hereditary angioedema affects approximately 1 in 50,000 individuals without gender or ethnic preference. Hereditary angioedema is caused by a decreased level (type I) or function (type II) of C1 inhibitor. Patients experience repeated episodes of angioedema involving sites that include the face, extremities, gastrointestinal tract, and larynx. Treatment involves measures to increase functioning levels of active C1 inhibitor through stimulation of endogenous pathways or exogenous supplementation. Additional therapies targeted at inhibition of bradykinin can also be used to treat episodes of angioedema. Treatment may be indicated for both acute episodes of angioedema and prevention of future episodes.

Emergency Department, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (Ms Verdi), and Department of Pediatrics, Section of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, Children's Hospital at Dartmouth, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (Dr Shaker), Lebanon, New Hampshire.

Conflict of interest: nothing to disclose.

Corresponding Author: Marylee Verdi, BSN, RN, Department of Emergency Medicine, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, One Medical Center Drive, Lebanon, NH 03756. (

For more than 54 additional continuing education articles related to Emergency Care topics, go to

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.