Types of Rash During Pregnancy and What It Can Mean

There are a number of skin changes that occur during pregnancy as hormone levels change and the skin stretches to accommodate the growing baby as the body prepares for motherhood.

For instance existing moles tend to darken, different kinds of rash during pregnancy may be seen, a dark line (the linea nigra) appears right down the belly, new skin tags may appear, veins under the skin become more prominent and so on.

Rash During Pregnancy

There are many kinds of rashes during pregnancy that could occur; with some particular varieties that are seen only during pregnancy

Dermatitis of pregnancy

This kind of rash can occur at any time during pregnancy and is a very itchy rash that occurs all over the body, appearing like hives.

Corticosteroids are usually needed to resolve this rash because there is some evidence to suggest danger to the fetus though none to the mother.

PUPPP – (Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy)

This kind of rash is commonly seen among 34 weeks pregnant women and is thought to be caused when the fetal cells somehow invade the mother’s skin during pregnancy.


It appears in the form of raised red spots, accompanied by itching.

This pregnancy rash is usually restricted to the abdomen and the thighs, but could spread to the buttocks and arms in some cases. This condition is not dangerous for mother or baby and will disappear after the baby arrives.

Impetigo herpetiformis

This pregnancy rash is rare but can be very troublesome – pus filled blisters, itching or burning of the skin, hair loss and also flu like symptoms such as fever, chills, joint pain, as well as digestive disturbances may be seen.

It starts in areas of the body with folds such as the back of the knees, the groin, elbows, genitals and even mucus membranes of the mouth. Though it disappears after childbirth scars may remain. Prompt treatment is needed because there is danger to the life of mother and child.

Prurigo gestationis

This rash during pregnancy is not associated with any particular danger to mother or baby, however it could be very itchy and appears in red dots in a earlier or later form. It can occur in the middle months of the pregnancy, when it may appear on the upper torso, arms and legs.

Or it could occur during the last week of pregnancy when it is usually seen in the stretch marks.

Yeast infection

Pregnancy is a time in a woman’s life when she becomes more prone to certain conditions, among them growth of yeast. Folds of the skin such as the underarm or under the breasts are where the itchy, round, red rash may appear.

Additionally there could be other kinds of rashes during pregnancy such as palmar erythema which is very common among white women and which may require some blood tests to be taken.

Also there could be general itchiness of skin during pregnancy since the skin is stretching to accommodate the baby and could also be drier during this time. A scalp rash during pregnancy may also be seen and can usually be controlled with a tar based shampoo.


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