Birthmarks and transient skin lesions in newborns and their relationship to maternal factors: a preliminary report from northern Italy

Dermatology. 2007;215(1):53-8. doi: 10.1159/000102034.


Background: A total of 620 healthy term neonates, randomly selected among babies born at the San Paolo Hospital in Milan (Italy), were examined to study the relationship between birthmarks and transient cutaneous lesions in newborns of different ethnic groups.

Methods: Information on sociodemographic factors and on physiopathological variables of the pregnancy was collected. Multiple logistic analyses were performed to assess associations between diagnosed skin lesions and various factors. Odds ratios (OR) as a measure of association and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals were estimated.

Results: A positive association was found between reduced hypoderm and pregnancy illness (OR = 2.78), hypertrophy genitalia and use of drugs (OR = 1.86) and illnesses in pregnancy (OR = 1.61). Hyperpigmentation in the genital area and Mongolian spot showed significant positive association with geographical area of origin, being systematically more frequent in non-European neonates, while for melanocytic congenital nevi a positive association was observed only for Asiatic newborns (OR = 4.67); salmon patch on the nape showed a significant OR of 1.81 among mothers aged > or = 35.

Conclusions: Significant associations between some sociodemographic factors and cutaneous lesions of the newborn and anamnestic data related to the pregnancy were found. Dermatologic conditions are common in the newborns and may justify dermatologic examination.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cafe-au-Lait Spots / congenital
  • Cafe-au-Lait Spots / epidemiology
  • Cohort Studies
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Female
  • Gestational Age
  • Hemangioma, Capillary / congenital
  • Hemangioma, Capillary / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Italy / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Nevus, Pigmented / congenital
  • Nevus, Pigmented / epidemiology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Pigmentation Disorders / congenital*
  • Pigmentation Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Pregnancy
  • Probability
  • Risk Assessment
  • Skin Abnormalities / diagnosis
  • Skin Abnormalities / epidemiology
  • Skin Diseases / congenital
  • Skin Diseases / epidemiology
  • Skin Neoplasms / congenital*
  • Skin Neoplasms / epidemiology*