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Baby Birthmarks & Rashes(Part1)

By: Nick Nguyen, MD, FAAP & Sheilagh M. Maguiness, MD, FAAD, FAAP

Gazing at your new baby, taking in every little detail, is one of the many joys of parenthood. Among many unique features you might notice is a birthmark, a different-looking spot on the skin that a baby is born with or develops soon after birth.


There are two main types of birthmarks: pigmented, spots of skin that contain extra pigment (color); and vascular, which contain extra blood vessels that didn’t fully form. Both types are usually harmless, and some go away on their own. But some need to be watched to make sure they don’t cause problems. Be sure to talk with your pediatrician about any birthmarks or rashes you notice on your baby.


Vascular Birthmarks—Pink, Red & Blue

Pink, red, and blue birthmarks often are made up of extra blood vessels. The extra blood can make some vascular birthmarks feel warm to touch. Vascular birthmarks may look and behave differently depending on the type of blood vessels in them. The most common blood vessel birthmarks include:

Nevus Simplex: “salmon patch,” “angel kiss” & “stork bite” birthmarks

Nevus simplex are flat pink or red birthmarks that up to 80% of babies are born with. They are collections of small, red blood vessels called capillaries. Often, these marks are located on the eyelids, forehead, back of neck, top of head, under the nose, and lower back. Sometimes, they are called “salmon patch” marks, “stork bites” (when located on back of the neck) and “angel kisses” (when they’re between the eyebrows).


Nevus simplex birthmarks usually will go away on their own by the time your baby is a toddler. Do not be alarmed if the birthmark gets darker when your baby becomes more emotional or active—this is normal.


Most nevus simples are totally harmless and do not need treatment. But be sure to talk with your pediatrician if they are large or located in unexpected areas.


Last Updated 3/11/2019

Source American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Dermatology and Society for Pediatric Dermatology (Copyright © 2018)

The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.


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