Treating Pregnancy Itch or PUPPP

Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy (PUPPP) is an itchy, bumpy rash that starts in the abdomen during the third trimester, and often resolves within weeks of delivery. Most women experience this during their first pregnancy, especially during the last 5 weeks of pregnancy whereby the abdomen is most stretched.

PUPPP occurs in 1 out of 150 pregnant women and are mostly inevitable and unexpected. Because the use of oral steroids are not advisable during the third trimester, the use of anti-itch cream or topical steroids are often prescribed. Daily use of moisturizer is also suggested, as it helps to ease the itch and eliminate any dryness.

Oatmeal baths are another good solution and a delightful way to pamper yourself. Oatmeal has been used for hundreds of years to soothe itchy and irritated skin. The number one main ingredient in bath soaks for itchy babies is colloidal oatmeal. Oatmeal can hold water and protect the skin because it is packed full of starches and beta-glucans. It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties because of the presence of phenols. According to the Journal of Drugs and Dermatology Journal of Drugs and Dermatology, a study was done where 139 patients used a colloidal oatmeal bath for three months, more than 71% reported a complete or dramatic reduction in itching.

As a clinic which treats skin conditions, we have found acupuncture to be useful in treating PUPPP. We also have clients coming in because they want to avoid the use of topical steroids, and we provide quality alternative care. Do write in for an appointment if you do happen to be suffering from PUPPP.