Due to hormonal changes during pregnancy, the skin undergoes several physiological changes. Inflammatory and autoimmune conditions can also rarely develop during pregnancy.
Skin around the nipple and genital becomes dark and a dark line develops in the middle of the abdomen (called Linea Nigra).
There may be purplish to pink streaks along the abdomen as the baby grows in the womb because of the stretching of the skin. These are called Striae.
Some women also develop pigmentation on the face (melasma).
Pruritic and Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy (PUPPP)
Also known as polymorphic eruption of pregnancy. It is a relatively common skin disorder that occurs in women of childbearing age. It usually presents in women during their first pregnancy. It is characterised by an itchy rash that commonly begins on the abdomen, particularly within stretch marks (striae). It most usually develops during late pregnancy (third trimester) but can also start immediately after the baby is born. It commonly spreads on the trunk, lower abdomen, under the breasts and limbs. The face, scalp and mucous membranes (mouth and genital area) are hardly ever affected. Small blisters are sometimes present. The baby is unaffected in this condition.
Pemphigoid gestationis is a rare skin blistering disorder that occurs in women. Pemphigoid gestationis is an auto-immune blistering disease. This means that the mother’s immune system starts reacting against her own skin causing the skin to split and form blisters.