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WHAT ARE CAUSE OF BLEEDING OR SPOOTING DURING PREGNANCY?

WHAT ARE CAUSE OF BLEEDING OR SPOOTING DURING PREGNANCY?
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Missed menstrual period at a woman is the first sign abour pregnant, but uterine bleeding can occur during pregnancy. As the causes for this range from trivial to serious, a pregnant woman should notify her health care provider of any vaginal bleeding. Please note, bleeding during pregnancy can be dangerous so you should call your physician if you have any signs of vaginal bleeding during pregnancy.

Vaginal bleeding can be somewhat common in the first trimester. This can present as anything from light spotting to sever bleeding with clots. First trimester bleeding complicates between 20 and 30 percent of all pregnancies. Up to half of those who experience this may go on to have a miscarriage. Early bleeding may be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy. An ectopic pregnancy is one in which the fetus is not inside the uterus. An ectopic pregnancy may threaten the life of the mother. First trimester bleeding may also be implantation bleeding (a small amount of spotting caused by the embryo implanting into the uterine wall). It can be a threatened, completed or incompleted miscarriage. It can be caused by a blighted ovum. A molar pregnancy (in which the fetus is not actually a baby but an abnormal tissue) can cause bleeding. Postcoital bleeding may be common during pregnancy as well.

Any vaginal bleeding during the last 6 months of a 9-month pregnancy is considered abnormal. Most late-pregnancy bleeding is caused by a problem with the placenta. A placentia previa occurs when the placenta completely covers the opening of your womb (the cervix) and some of the blood vessels of the placenta stretch and rupture. A placental abruption occurs when a normal placenta separates from the uterine wall prematurely and blood pools between the placenta and the uterus. A uterine rupture is a splitting open of the uterus and may also cause late-pregnancy bleeding. In rare cases late-pregnancy bleeding may be caused by a fetal vessel rupture, in which the vessels from the umbilical cord attach to the membranes instead of the placenta. Other even more rare causes can be injuries or lesions of the cervix and vagina, including polyps, cancer and varicose veins.

Bleeding after the 28th week of pregnancy is a true emergency. This bleeding can be very mild to extremely brisk, and may or may not have accompanying abdominal pain. Hemorrhage is the most common cause of death of the mother in the US, and complicates roughly 4 percent of pregnancies. (by Sophia Levis)

Information about Spotting or Bleeding?
If you are notice abour spotting or bleeding, try to call your doctor or midwife right away, even if the bleeding seems to have stopped. While it may turn out to be something minor, it could also be a sign of a serious problem. You'll probably need an exam to rule out any complications and to make sure you and your baby are fine. (If you're actively bleeding or have severe pain of any kind and can't immediately reach your practitioner, head straight for the emergency room.)

How is spotting different from bleeding?
Spotting is very light bleeding, similar to what you may have at the very beginning or end of your period. It can vary in color from pink to red to brown (the color of dried blood).

What can cause spotting?
Because of an increase in the blood supply to your cervix and greater blood flow to the area, you might spot after having a Pap smear, an internal exam, or sex. Other causes include:

  • Implantation bleeding You may have very scant "implantation bleeding," possibly around 11 or 12 days after fertilization (close to the time you might notice a missed period). It may be caused by the fertilized egg burrowing into the wall of your uterus — a process that starts just six days after fertilization — but no one knows for sure. The bleeding is very light, lasting only a day or two, and only a minority of pregnant women have this kind of spotting at all.
  • Miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy Spotting can be an early sign of miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy, especially if accompanied by abdominal pain or cramping. About a quarter of pregnant women have some spotting or bleeding in early pregnancy, and about half of these women miscarry. But if you have an ultrasound that shows a heartbeat between 7 and 11 weeks, your chances of continuing the pregnancy are greater than 90 percent.
  • Infections Spotting can also be caused by conditions unrelated to pregnancy. A vaginal infection (such as a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis) or a sexually transmitted infection (such as trichomoniasis, gonorrhea, chlamydia, or herpes) can cause your cervix to become irritated or inflamed. An inflamed cervix is particularly susceptible to spotting after sex or after a Pap smear. You may also spot or bleed after sex or a Pap smear if you have a cervical polyp (a benign growth).
  • Placental problems or premature labor In the second or third trimester, bleeding or spotting can be a sign of a serious condition such as placenta previa, placental abruption (in which the placenta separates from the uterus), a late miscarriage (between 13 weeks and midpregnancy), or premature labor (between midpregnancy and 37 weeks).
  • Normal labor A mucus discharge that's tinged with blood after 37 weeks is most likely just a sign that the mucus plug has dislodged and the cervix is beginning to soften or dilate in preparation for labor. You should still report any other bleeding or spotting at this point to your practitioner.
  • Unknown In some cases, the cause of the spotting will remain a mystery. About 20 weeks into her first pregnancy, teacher Laura Graff discovered she was spotting. Her doctor was concerned, so he advised Graff to take it easy for a while — to skip exercising, stop having sexual intercourse, and avoid lifting heavy objects for three weeks. After a week, the spotting stopped. Her doctor never figured out why it had happened, and Laura's son, Kevin, was born healthy at full-term.

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