Pregnancy dermatoses

What are Pregnancy Dermatoses?

Pregnancy dermatoses are inflammatory skin diseases that occur specifically to women when they are pregnant. They can occur due to a number of factors and causes.

What are the types of Pregnancy Dermatoses and what causes them?

  • Pemphigoid Gestationis
    A rare skin condition caused by the production of autoantibodies to proteins found in the skin that often causes blistering and redness.
  • Polymorphic Eruption of Pregnancy (Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy [PUPPP])
    An itchy rash that sometimes appears when a woman is pregnant. It can present in a patch of itchy bumps that first appear in stretch marks on the belly and spread to other areas. Exact cause is unknown but has been linked to hormonal changes.
  • Atopic Eruption of Pregnancy (A number of conditions with similar features including eczema in pregnancy, prurigo of pregnancy, pruritic folliculitis of pregnancy)
    Pregnant women typically experience dry skin, rough red patches or itchy bumps affecting any part of the body, and may or may not have eczema before pregnancy. This condition does not not harm the baby and typically improves after delivery. The cause is usually related to immune issues with a history of eczema or hay fever.
  • Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy
    Caused by a liver condition that occurs in late pregnancy, triggering intense itching without rashes (usually on the hands or feet).

What are the common symptoms of Pregnancy Dermatoses in Singapore?

Symptoms of pregnancy dermatoses may include:

  • Blistering
  • Red and itchy bumps and rashes
  • Itching (pruritis)
  • Hives
  • Excoriated papules or nodules
  • Eczematous papules and plaques

What are the risk factors for Pregnancy Dermatoses?

Those who are overweight and experienced pregnancy dermatoses before are at a higher risk of developing them. Diet and genetics may also be risk factors.

What are the treatment options available for Pregnancy Dermatoses in Singapore?

  • Topical emollients and moisturizers
    Your doctor may prescribe topical creams to help manage the symptoms of pregnancy dermatoses.
  • Steroids and oral histamines
    For moderate to severe cases, your doctor may prescribe steroids and oral histamines to reduce itching and rashes.
  • Phototherapy
    For severe cases, phototherapy may be recommended to treat pregnancy dermatoses.
  • Avoid irritants
    Your doctor may also advise you to avoid irritants such as soap and laundry detergent if it’s causing dermatoses.


What does a contact allergy look like?
Skin rashes, hives, itchiness, redness, burning, swelling, and tenderness could be symptoms of a contact allergy, especially after coming into contact with a particular substance.
How do you relieve contact allergies?
Applying anti-itch creams and taking anti-itch medications, cold compresses, cool baths, and avoiding the particular substance that causes the allergy can all provide relief for contact allergies.
How long does it take to treat contact allergies?
Upon avoiding the contact allergen, symptoms typically clear up in 2-4 weeks. However, it depends on the individual and treatment plan.
Are contact allergies contagious?
No, contact allergies are not contagious and will not spread to other people.



Dr Uma Alagappan is a MOH accredited consultant dermatologist in private with more than 15 years experience as a medical doctor. She sub-specialises in paediatric dermatology, women’s dermatology and general dermatology. Dr Uma’s interests include chronic eczema, food allergy and immunodermatology. She is also well versed with the use of lasers for treating paediatric and adult patients.
Dr Uma completed her dermatology training in Changi General Hospital and National Skin Centre in 2015. She joined KKH Dermatology Service to subspecialize in paediatric dermatology in 2017. She was awarded the Ministry of Health Manpower Development Plan Award in 2019 to pursue paediatric immunodermatology and allergo-dermatology in the renowned Boston Children’s Hospital, Massachusetts, USA. Upon her return, she spearheaded a number of clinics at KKH including the food allergy eczema clinic for the paediatric eczema patients, immunodermatology clinics and the psychology eczema multi-disciplinary clinics.
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