Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Gallagher A, Hourihane JO'B, Kenny LC, Irvine AD, Khashan AS
Obstetric Medicine
A longitudinal study of skin barrier function in pregnancy and the postnatal period
In Press
Optional Fields
Postnatal, pregnancy, skin barrier, trans epidermal water loss
Background It is unknown whether skin’s barrier function changes in pregnancy. Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL) refers to the total amount of water loss through the skin and TEWL can be measured non-invasively as an index of skin barrier function. We measured TEWL during and after pregnancy to evaluate pregnancy-related skin barrier function. Methods This was a prospective, longitudinal cohort study of 52 low-risk, first-time pregnant women nested within the Screening for Pregnancy Endpoints (SCOPE) Ireland study. TEWL (gwater/m2/h) was measured three times during pregnancy: 19–21 weeks, 27–32 weeks and 36 weeks; and three times postnatally: 2–4 days, 2 months and 6 months post-delivery. Data were analysed using SPSS 18.0 and P > 0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results A rise in TEWL was seen between each visit with the highest readings, exceeding the normal range of 0–20 gwater/m2/h, recorded at two months post-delivery. Forty women attended at two months post-delivery of whom 22 women had an average reading between 0 and 20 gwater/m2/h; 10 women had an average reading between 21 and 40 gwater/m2/h and 8 women had an average reading between 41 and 75 gwater/m2/h. Readings had returned to an average of 0–20 gwater/m2/h at six months postnatally. Conclusion TEWL increases slightly in pregnancy and the postnatal period. The clinical significance of this is unclear and requires further investigation.
Print ISSN: 1753-495X
doi: 10.1177/1753495X14547428
Grant Details