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During pregnancy, acne can both clear and get worse. In early pregnancy, acne often gets a bit worse but as pregnancy progresses, acne can often improve, possibly because of increased levels of oestrogen.

Treatment in pregnancy

Topical treatments that can be used in pregnancy include:

- Benzoyl peroxide
- Azelaic acid

On the whole, it is preferable to avoid oral medicines in pregnancy in case they have an effect on the fetus. However, oral erythromycin may be prescribed safely for severe acne.

The following medications must be avoided in pregnancy or if pregnancy is being contemplated:

-Oral isotretinoin
-Topical retinoids (tretinoin, isotretinoin and adapalene)
-Salicylic acid preparations

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