Medically the evaluation by Debra Sullivan, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., CNE, COI — created by Helen Millar top top November 24, 2020

Some people develop skin rashes throughout pregnancy. The clinical name for this is pregnant dermatosis. Rashes can vary in severity and duration, relying on what causes them.

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Hormone levels, stretching skin, genetics, and blood circulation can every play a role.

This article discusses seven species of rash that have the right to occur during pregnancy, consisting of their symptoms and treatments. It additionally looks at how world can control the symptoms at home.


Itchy skin is common during pregnancy, and some people also develop rashes. Some species of rash are certain to pregnancy, while rather can occur at any time. However, some rashes might be an ext likely throughout pregnancy because that some world due to the physical alters their human body is walking through.

In most cases, skin rashes space not serious and do not indicate a difficulty with the fetus. However, identify the cause early on is important, as some rashes space a symptom that an underlying condition.

Some rash that can occur during pregnancy include:

atopic eruption the pregnancyimpetigo herpetiformis

Pregnancy can cause people to feel unusually warm since of boosted blood it is provided to the skin. As a result, a person may discover that castle sweat more, which, in part cases, may result in a heat rash.

A heat rash, or prickly heat, reasons an itchy spot of tiny blisters ~ above the skin. Staying cool and also dry can help heat rash heal. If a human being experiences warmth rashes, they have the right to try:

wearing loosened clothing make from organic fibers, such as cottonworking and sleeping in cool, well-ventilated roomschanging out of wet clothing as quickly as possibleusing cool water compresses top top the rash

Hives look like raised bumps or welts on the skin. They itch and also often occur because of an allergic reaction. However, there room other possible causes, including:

heatscratching the skinstresspressure top top the skin

Feeling hot and itchy is typical during pregnancy and also may bring about hives. In addition, the writer of a 2013 article suggest the hormonal alters may additionally induce hives.

A person can treat soft hives at residence by cooling the skin. If the hives are serious or happen alongside ede or an obstacle breathing, a human should seek instant medical help.


Atopic eruption of pregnant is the most usual pregnancy-specific skin disorder. The term teams several comparable pregnancy decision together. These include:

atopic eczemaprurigo of pregnancypruritic folliculitis the pregnancy

Eczema is a an extremely dry and also itchy decision that shows up red in lighter skin and gray or brown in darker skin. People who develop eczema throughout pregnancy may uncover that lesions flare up an ext than usual throughout the very first and 2nd trimesters.

Prurigo the pregnancy involves a rashes that is composed of papules, which are small bumps filled through fluid. Pruritic folliculitis causes papules the resemble pimples, or acne.

These problems are uncomfortable but do not pose a hazard to the pregnant human or the fetus. The rash will frequently disappear after delivery. Until then, a doctor might prescribe emollients, steroid creams, or antihistamines to reduce itching.


PUPPP rashes affects about 1 in every 160 pregnancies. This condition is much more common in world carrying multiple fetuses, as with twins or triplets.

A PUPPP rash establishes when the skin stretches, damaging the layer of tissue underneath. This reasons inflammation, which appears as a rash. A PUPPP rash sometimes begins in the 2nd trimester but usually creates in the last 3 month of pregnancy. It goes away after providing birth.

A PUPPP decision is itchy and produces bumps on the skin, however it go not cause complications. A doctor may indicate using oral antihistamines, skin emollients, or steroid medicine to treat it.


ICP, or obstetric cholestasis (OC), is a possibly serious liver problem that can occur during pregnancy. It causes severe itching that begins on the palms of the hands and the soles the the feet before spreading to other parts of the body. The itching may occur with or there is no a rash.

Sometimes, itching is the just symptom of ICP. Occasionally, a person may also develop jaundice, which reasons the nails, skin, and also eyes to end up being slightly yellow. ICP typically occurs in the third trimester.

The likelihood of occurring ICP differs among ethnic groups. The problem affects 1% the females of north European ancestry. It is an ext common in civilization of Scandinavian or Araucanian Indian descent.

ICP can reason pregnancy complications, so at an early stage recognition, diagnosis, treatment, and also close surveillance are really important. Serious itching in pregnant is no normal, therefore a human should check out a doctor instantly if this occurs.


Impetigo herpetiformis is a rarely skin problem that appears during pregnancy, frequently in the last trimester. The is comparable to pustular psoriasis, which reasons severe skin inflammation.

This rash begins as lesions in the skin folds. These can then spread across the surface ar of the skin, covering large patches. The skin may crust or come to be infected. World can additionally experience:

feverdiarrheadehydrationrapid heartbeatseizures

Impetigo herpetiformis commonly resolves ~ a person gives birth, yet there is a threat of stillbirth. In rarely cases, this condition is fatal. Doctors control the condition and reduce these threats by prescribing systemic corticosteroids and also antibiotics.

If a human being experiences impetigo herpetiformis throughout one pregnancy, they may experience the again in future pregnancies.


Pemphigoid gestationis is a rarely autoimmune condition that affect 1 in every 50,000 pregnancies. It causes an itchy, hive-like rash the begins approximately the navel and also then spreads to various other parts of the body. The rashes may likewise include blisters.

This condition often begins in the second or 3rd trimester. It can resolve throughout late pregnancy, yet it frequently flares up prior to delivery. After ~ pregnancy, the menstrual bicycle or use of oral birth manage pills may trigger the rash to return.

In 5–10% the pemphigoid gestationis cases, newborns space born through skin lesions. However, the exact risk that this condition poses come the fetus is unclear.


Mild rashes, such together hives, warm rash, or mild eczema, have the right to improve with home management. A human can try the adhering to methods to soothe excited skin and also ease itching:

keeping the skin clean and dry utilizing a gentle, unscented cleanserwashing through cool or lukewarm water quite than warm or cold watermoisturizing the skin making use of an unscented emollient, specifically after bathing, showering, or washing the handsavoiding assets that might irritate the skin, such together harsh soaps or perfumeswearing loose, soft fabrics, such as cotton or linenavoiding scratching the skin, together this have the right to make some skin conditions worse

Many develops of pregnant rash room harmless, however it is constantly best to view a medical professional so the they deserve to identify the cause and confirm the a human does no need medical treatment. A medical professional can likewise advise ~ above the best means to care for skin conditions during pregnancy.

A person should seek instant treatment if a rash:

appears suddenly and spreads quicklycauses significant itching or painco-occurs with an obstacle breathing and also swellingis weeping pus or watch infected

A human being should likewise see a medical professional as soon as possible if lock experience serious itchiness there is no a rash.


Rashes and also itchy skin are typical during pregnancy. Plenty of rashes space harmless and may deal with after providing birth. However, in rarely cases, rashes deserve to be a sign of a much more serious condition.

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If a human being does not understand the reason of a pregnant rash, they should see a physician for a diagnosis.


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Medically the review by Debra Sullivan, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., CNE, COI — composed by Helen Millar top top November 24, 2020