Week 29 – Vaginal Bleeding
Hello. This is Dr. Mauldin. You’re now 29 weeks gestation.
Vaginal bleeding in pregnancy has several causes. Some are serious while others are not.
The causes of bleeding during the second half of pregnancy differ from those in early pregnancy. Minor bleeding may be a result of an inflamed cervix or from a growth on the cervix. Heavier bleeding usually involves the placenta.
The 2 most common causes of bleeding in late pregnancy are placental abruption and placenta previa. Preterm labor can also cause vaginal bleeding.
Placental abruption means that the placenta detaches from the uterine wall before or during labor. Only 1% of pregnant women have this problem. When the placenta separates early, the baby may get less oxygen. This, of course, would be dangerous to the baby.
Mothers at an increased risk of placental abruption have high blood pressure, smoke, use cocaine or suffer an injury to their abdomen – such as being hit or being in a car accident.
Placenta previa means that the placenta lies partly or completely over the cervix. Again, less than 1% of all pregnant women have this problem. But it can occur more frequently among mothers who have had more than one c-section. Bleeding from a placenta previa is usually painless and not associated with contractions.
Call your doctor if you have bleeding during the second half of your pregnancy. Depending on the reason for the bleeding, you may need to stay in the hospital for several days or weeks. Most importantly, get help promptly – because the health of you and your baby depends on it.
Take good care of yourself. I hope you are enjoying the pregnancy and I’ll talk to you next week.