Autoimmune Progesterone Dermatitis

Tami Maguire


Dermatology Nursing. 2009;21(4):190-192. 

In This Article


Patients with APD may present with a variety of unusual skin manifestations resulting in a delayed diagnosis (Snyder & Krishnaswamy, 2003). The exact pathogenesis is unknown, but is thought to involve a hypersensitivity reaction to a woman's own progesterone. Diagnosis of APD is made by taking a thorough and appropriate clinical history combined with an intradermal sensitivity test with progesterone. Current treatment includes an attempt to inhibit secretion of progesterone through anovulation. Menses causes many signs and symptoms, including mood swings, bloating, weight gain, acne, along with many others. There may be many women who suffer from autoimmune progesterone dermatitis and don't realize it, believing that the symptoms they are experiencing are normal menses-related symptoms. There is help for recurrent attacks and ultimate remission if diagnosed correctly. There are no support groups for the few women who have been diagnosed and the demographic information is very limited. Further research and funding are needed for studying the pathogenesis of autoimmune progesterone dermatitis to appropriately diagnose and cure this debilitating disorder.


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