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Itching skin during pregnancy may be due to a number of causes that were present prior to conception. However, itchy skin in pregnancy may be a result of some underlying condition or cause that has been exacerbated due to the pregnant state. Of these type of conditions, allergic conditions resulting in itchy skin are the most common. The use of antihistamines to treat the itch are often of concern due to the debate surrounding the teratogenic properties of these drugs. Ask a Doctor Online Now!Itching within the first trimester of pregnancy is common and is usually not a cause for concern if there is no visible skin rash or concomitant signs and symptoms.
There are certain causes of pruritus in pregnancy that may only occur or are more likely to occur in the pregnant state.
Also known as polymorphic eruption of pregnancy (PEP) or previously as toxemic rash of pregnancy. More commonly affects a woman in her first pregnancy but may recur in subsequent pregnancies. Usually occurs in the areas where stretch marks (striae distensae) is most prominent – abdomen, thighs and buttocks. Previously known as herpes gestationis due to its appearance but it is not caused by the herpes virus.
Tends to occur in the third trimester of pregnancy but may initially appear in the latter part of the second trimester. Progresses into large blisters (bullae) surrounded by rough, cracking skin (excoriated papules). Poses a varying degree of risk to the fetus and an early delivery may have to be considered. Occurs when bile (bile salts) enter the bloodstream due to the diminished flow of bile out of the liver.
Ask a Doctor Online Now!Please note that any information or feedback on this website is not intended to replace a consultation with a health care professional and will not constitute a medical diagnosis. Chiggers rashes, also known as Trombiculosis, are inflammatory reactions on the skin caused by the bite of trombiculid mites or “chiggers”. Common in areas which have thinned skin such as in the area of the groin or armpits; also common on the ankles and on the skin behind the knees. Chiggers rashes are caused by the digestive enzymes the mites deposit under a person’s skin as they feed.
Treatment for chiggers rashes is especially important if scratching of the itchy skin has resulted in abrasions, making secondary infection possible.
An amoxicillin rash is a skin condition that arises as an unwanted side-effect from taking the antibiotic drug amoxicillin. Amoxicillin is used as an effective form of treatment for bacterial infections that affect the ears, throat, or urinary tract; but like any antibiotic medication, amoxicillin also produces unwanted side-effects. In serious cases however, allergic amoxicillin reactions are treated through antihistamines and bronchodilators in order to deter the dangerous allergic reactions that can constrict the respiratory passageway. A strep throat rash is the characteristic rash that occurs along with a bacterial streptococcal infection.
Strep throat rashes are caused by an underlying bacterial infection in the form of group A streptococcal bacteria. A sun rash is the dermatologic condition that occurs due to an increased sensitivity to the sun’s rays. A stress rash is a skin condition that appears as a response to undergoing mental or emotional stress. Dermatologic manifestations such as rashes can be linked to stress because of the signals the nervous system sends to the rest of the body when it feels that the normal balance is disturbed while a person is experiencing stress. A sweat rash is a fungal infection on the skin that results from the presence of trapped moisture in the sweat ducts.
The sweat rash develops due to the reaction that occurs between candida – a naturally-occurring type of yeast on the skin – and the sweat the body produces. Sweat rashes are more common in children and infants because their sweat glands are still immature and thus rupture if too much perspiration is collected within them.
Most cases of sweat rashes simply disappear on their own, but resolution can be aided through a number of ways.
The lamictal rash is a skin condition that arises as a side-effect to the use of the anticonvulsant drug called Lamictal, a medication known generically as lamotrigine.
In particular, if the rashes start to occur upon mucous membranes of the mouth, nose, or eyes, immediate medical treatment should be sought out as this can be indicative of serious and damaging conditions. If a rash develops upon using Lamictal, any succeeding doses should be put on hold until a physician is seen. The lupus rash is a skin condition associated with the presence of the autoimmune disease called Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE).
Lupus is an autoimmune inflammatory disease which means that a patient with the illness has antibodies that are faulty and attack the patient’s own tissue because they mistakenly identify these as foreign and unfamiliar. The lupus rashes are primarily treated through the topical application of skin creams such as corticosteroids and antimalarial drugs like hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine. SLE patients with rashes should always put on sunscreen with high SPF values before getting exposed to sunlight. A viral rash is any type of skin rash brought about by the presence of an underlying viral infection. Viral rashes are also usually accompanied by other symptoms indicative of a viral infection, such as fever, headaches, and body pains. Viral rashes are most effectively resolved once the viral infection itself is treated, but most viruses are self-limiting and are simply given time to heal and disappear on their own.

The cause of the PUPPP rashes is unknown but findings have suggested that the reaction may be brought about by the skin distension that occurs in pregnancy, which will also explain why this skin condition is usually only experienced by first-time mothers (primigravida) and mothers who are having multiple pregnancies such as by having twins or triplets. Antihistamines are also given to provide relief for itchiness but are not as effective as corticosteroids.
Itching can be the result of a skin disease, such as an allergic skin rash, or an internal medical issue, such as liver or thyroid disease. At other times, those conditions that appear after conception may have been developing or were bound to develop, irrespective of the pregnancy.
Alternatively, pregnancy was the trigger for the onset of a condition which the woman was predisposed to but had not as yet presented due to the lack of precipitating factors. The increasing estrogen levels are known to exacerbate allergy-related conditions and may be also be noticed by females using hormone contraceptives or even hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Certain antihistamines like chlorphenamine have a long safety record in pregnancy and can be used for palliating the itch although this should only be done after consulting a doctor or gynecologist.
The latter may have been pre-existing and related to allergies earlier in life which may have also presented as as asthma or allergic rhinitis (allergic triad : eczema, asthma, hay fever). The enzyme is injected into the skin through the feeding tube the mite uses to penetrate soft surface of the skin. Anti-itch creams and medications include calamine lotion and corticosteroid creams to reduce and eventually eliminate itching. Amoxicillin is one of the most common antibiotics prescribed by doctors for typical bacterial infections.
The development of a severely itchy rash can indicate a dangerous allergic reaction that needs immediate care. Rashes can occur as an idiopathic side-effect of the drug, but can also indicate an allergic reaction. The disease can be contracted upon coming into direct contact with infected fluids such as saliva or nasal secretions.
This is achieved through a full course of antibiotics, usually observed over a period of at least 1 to 2 weeks. An abnormally heightened inflammatory response to being exposed to direct sunlight can be brought about by a number of causes, including medications, exposure to certain chemicals, and a natural sensitivity to sunlight during sudden changes in climate.
Some people have a condition called photosensitivity which makes them react more aggressively to sun exposure.
For instance, some perfumes contain chemicals that cause the sensitivity while in the case of medications, drugs like sulfonamides and tetracycline increase the tendency for inflammatory responses to occur upon exposing the skin to sunlight. The relationship between the skin and the nervous stress people experience is at first puzzling, but biologically, the rash occurs in reaction to the various stimuli sent out by the nervous system when a person is subjected to a certain level of psychological stress. Under stress, a chemical reaction on the skin is triggered, thus the skin tends to become sensitized.
The skin condition is more prevalent during hot climates such as in the summer season, and is more common in tropical countries that experience extreme heat and humidity.
This combination leads to the clogging up of the pores and sweat ducts, barring the perspiration continually produced by the sweat glands from reaching the surface of the skin. The patient should cool and dry the skin through avoiding too much exposure to heat and sunlight and by applying cool compresses over affected areas. The drug is effectively used to treat seizures experienced by patients with epilepsy and acts as a mood stabilizer for patients with bipolar disorder but poses the risk of various side effects, including triggering the appearance of rashes. The rash has a greater tendency to occur or worsen if Lamictal is taken along with valproic acid or sodium valproate.
After medical observation, the Lamictal dose can then be adjusted or discontinued, depending on the physician’s orders. As an autoimmune disease, SLE does not usually present itself with a predictable set of symptoms in each of the patients suffering from it, but its distinctive rash remains as a consistent sign in most SLE patients. The reactions that the antibodies make start up an inflammatory response, causing swelling and tissue damage to organs as well as to the skin.
In most cases, the root source of a rash can be determined according to the nature of the symptoms that are present, but in cases wherein the doctor is unable to identify the type of virus causing the condition, the rash is simply considered to be non-specific and is treated as a generic type of skin rash. The rashes can however be helped through topical remedies such as anti-itch creams and antihistamines in order to control the redness and itching. PUPPS is an acronym that stands for Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques indicating the rashes that appear upon onset of the skin condition. The stretching of the skin during pregnancy can damage connective tissues in the skin and thus activate an inflammatory response. In both these instances, pregnancy was not the cause or precipitating factor and these itchy skin conditions were non-specific. Hormonal, immunological or unknown factors relating to pregnancy may serve as a trigger or aggravating factor for pre-existing or chronic skin diseases.
Anxiety may play a role in this type of itching (psychogenic) as it is more frequently noted in first time mothers. Their bites are most commonly received when staying in grassy areas such as forests, fields, or parks which are the main habitat of these tiny organisms because they dwell on grass tips, feeding on vegetation. The feeding tube called the sylostome allows entry of the enzyme into underlying layers causing irritation and setting off an allergic and inflammatory response that leads to the development of rashes. Antihistamines taken orally such as Benadryl can also effectively get rid of itching and inflammation. As is common for most antibiotics, amoxicillin causes side-effects in some people, including the emergence of skin rashes. Allergies to medications occur when the proteins contained in the drugs are mistakenly identified by antibodies as threats and are treated as invaders; thus producing the allergic reaction. Strep throat is otherwise known as “Scarlet Fever”, earning its name for the distinctive rashes that occur over the body of the patient; hence the rashes are also called “scarlatina”.
The streptococcal bacteria are transported via the air once an infected person sneezes or coughs without covering the mouth or nose.

However, if the rashes are proving to be relatively bothersome, simple home remedies such as cool compresses and calamine lotions are usually enough to relieve itching and inflammation. Sun rashes are self-limiting and are not a serious condition, however, infections are a potential complication that should be avoided especially if the patient persistently scratches and could injure the affected skin.
The rashes occur as the body responds to the proteins and compounds found in ultraviolet rays, but over time, the body gradually adapts to the sunlight and adjusts itself to the new environment, reducing the reactions produced. The rashes emerge as red and elevated areas on the skin, and can tend to aggravate and persist when the person fails to recover from or pacify the stress he is going through. The nervous system senses the stress the body is undergoing and causes an increased production of cortisol along with other hormones. Essentially, treating stress rashes is centered around resolving the stressor, thus consequentially getting rid of the symptoms as well.
Toddlers and young children are more susceptible to the condition because of their underdeveloped sweat glands. Topical applications of calamine lotion as well as anti-fungal creams that contain hydrocortisone will treat the inflammation and itchiness. A Lamictal rash can be nothing more than a bothersome irritation on the skin at times, but can also indicate a possibly serious reaction that can further progress and lead to more dangerous conditions.
A patient is more susceptible to developing the rash if he takes more than the initial dose recommended by the physician or if the patient increases the dosage much too quickly after beginning the treatment on Lamictal. The lupus rash appears on areas of the skin which receives the most exposure to sunlight, such as on the face. The rash in SLE patients is a result of the inflammatory process in combination with an abnormally increased sensitivity to the heat of the sun. Usually, viral rashes are not serious or life-threatening, although they can be frustrating and itchy.
It is the most common type of pregnancy-related rashes and although unattractive and bothersome, does not pose any danger to both the mother and the unborn child. In severe cases, doctors prescribe the use of topical as well as oral corticosteroids, but the possible effects of oral potent corticosteroids may pose an unknown danger to the pregnancy. However if the itching is persisting, getting worse, affecting sleep or other activities, then it should be investigated.
Amoxicillin rashes can be harmless and are called non-allergic rashes, but in some cases, the occurrence of rashes after ingesting amoxicillin can also indicate a more serious and potentially fatal allergic reaction. The rash does not always appear in all patients dealing with the scarlet fever disease, but it is treated as a cardinal sign of the presence of the illness.
Once infection occurs, the bacteria release a toxin that causes the inflammatory response, resulting in the development of rashes on the skin. These stimulate the sebaceous glands to release more oil, causing rashes due to the irritation of the skin.
It is also known as a “butterfly rash” for the shape it assumes as it is spread horizontally across the patient’s cheeks and nose. Certain viral illnesses such as chickenpox and measles include the presence of these rashes as a symptom but most viral rashes non-specific. The illness usually occurs in the third trimester of first-time pregnancies and lasts for about 6 weeks before resolving on its own in 1 to 2 weeks’ time following the delivery of the baby. Either way, having an itchy rash during pregnancy can add anxiety to an otherwise stressful time for many women.Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy (PUPPP)PUPPP is the most common itchy rash that women can experience during pregnancy, and it affects up to 1 in 160 pregnancies. In addition, stress prompts the increased production of histamine, causing dilation of blood vessels and inflammatory responses. Most viral rashes can have a sudden onset and are accompanied by other symptoms such as fever and pains, but then resolve on their own after some time. PUPPP usually occurs during a woman’s first pregnancy in the third trimester and results in an extremely itchy rash that resembles hives. Treatment of PUPPP involves oral antihistamines and topical steroids; sometimes oral steroids are needed. PUPPP does not harm the baby, and the rash usually fades within a few weeks after delivery.Prurigo of PregnancyPrurigo of pregnancy is another common form of itching during pregnancy, affecting 1 in 300 mothers to be. Affected women experience itchy bumps along the extensor surfaces of the arms and legs, and occasionally on the abdomen.
Prurigo can occur at any time during the pregnancy and is treated with moisturizers, topical steroids and oral antihistamines. The rash usually resolves shortly after delivery, but may occur again in future pregnancies.Cholestasis of PregnancyItching from cholestasis of pregnancy typically occurs in the third trimester.
It’s related to the buildup of bile acids in the bloodstream from the gall bladder and biliary system. If that happens, prompt medical attention is required.Herpes GestationisHerpes gestationis is a rare autoimmune rash that occurs during late pregnancy (second and third trimester), and affects 1 in 50,000 pregnancies.
Occasionally, herpes gestationis is associated with premature delivery and low birth weights, but it does not otherwise affect the baby.
The rash commonly flares at delivery, then resolves shortly thereafter, but is likely to recur with future pregnancies.Pruritic Folliculitis of PregnancyPruritic folliculitis of pregnancy most commonly occurs during the second and third trimesters, affecting 1 in 3,000 pregnancies.
Treatment includes topical acne treatments such as benzoyl peroxide and, occasionally, topical steroids and oral antihistamines. This rash usually goes away within a month or two after delivery, and does not affect the baby.

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