Question about Pre-term Labour

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ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707
Question about Pre-term Labour

Hi Ladies!

I have been poor at posting lately but I was wondering if I can pick your brains...

I had some bleeding/spotting last week (28 weeks along). I also had an increase in BH and low back pain. I have been constipated my entire pg but now I have loose bowels.

Everything started on Tuesday evening and by Thursday I had lost a very bloody (but brown blood!) mucus plug but spotting had stopped. I started spotting again on Saturday but it only lasted a few hours. Any spotting I had was bright red.

I was checked and cervix is high and closed (they will recheck on Wednesday). I am not at risk for previa (unless the placenta can move a lot because I had a ton of length at my 18 week u/s).

Does anyone have any idea why this happened? How do they have no idea about where the bleeding is coming from. Should I expect to have it happen the rest of my pregnancy?

TIA!

MrsMangoBabe's picture
Joined: 04/09/07
Posts: 2276

Erin, I really don't know. If you are not having cervical change, then it doesn't seem like the bleeding would be coming from your cervix, and I don't think it is possible for a placenta that was not near the cervix at 18 weeks can suddenly be over it--placentas don't actually "move" around the uterus, they will sometimes get further away from the cervix as the uterus stretches, sort of like a sticker on a balloon that is being filled with air. I hope they can figure out what is causing the bleeding!

mommys's picture
Joined: 05/08/06
Posts: 6264

I don't really know, I'm sorry your practitioner couldn't give you a better idea. I did have 5 weeks of bleeding/spotting in first trimester and my midwives said that most often it is just the cervix itself that has been irritated or has a small polyp on it that bleeds off and on until it heals.

joysiloo's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1054

Did you have any kind of abdominal trauma (fall, car accident, or even something less severe)? It is possible for the placenta to partially detach which can cause bleeding, and depending on where the detachment is, it isn't necessarily a lot of blood. I imagine they did an ultrasound to check on your placenta function - if they didn't and the bleeding continues, I would request one.

Placental abruption can be extremely serious, but it can also be fine as long as it's monitored.

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

"joysiloo" wrote:

Did you have any kind of abdominal trauma (fall, car accident, or even something less severe)? It is possible for the placenta to partially detach which can cause bleeding, and depending on where the detachment is, it isn't necessarily a lot of blood. I imagine they did an ultrasound to check on your placenta function - if they didn't and the bleeding continues, I would request one.

Placental abruption can be extremely serious, but it can also be fine as long as it's monitored.

Funny you say this because although I can't think of any trauma, this was the best perdition they gave me. Can I go to term with a small detachment? I did not have an u/s. How long does the bleeding last?

Thank you!

joysiloo's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1054

You can go to term with a small detachment. In fact, the baby can be fine with up to a 50% detachment. The problem with small abruptions is that they can become bigger quickly and if they do, it can be a serious emergency. Often there isn't much blood because the detachment is in the middle of the placenta and instead of leaking into the uterus, the blood pools behind the placenta.

The downside to a detachment is that it can be difficult for the baby in labor because blood supply to the placenta is significantly decreased during contractions anyway, and when there is less placenta attached, it can decrease too much. Labor can also cause the placenta to detach before the baby is born, which is a full abruption. Having an abruption, even a partial, is usually a very real reason for a c-section. That's why I would want an ultrasound just to make sure...so you're not worried over nothing, and so that if there is a risk, you can prepare for it.

It probably isn't an abruption, and I almost didn't respond because I didn't want to scare you, but if I were in your place, I would get an ultrasound to rule it out.

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

Thank you Daphne! Like I said, a partial placenta detachment was the doctors best guess as to what happened. I will request an u/s when I see my doc on Wednesday.

I really appreciate the response!

jonibug's picture
Joined: 11/27/06
Posts: 781

Did they actually LOOK at your cervix (like use a speculum)? I ask b/c I've had bleeding since 20 weeks off and on and they said my cervix is vascular, though still high and closed. But my bleeding is very different from yours. Before I got my ultrasound, they had mentioned the possibility of partial placental abruption or blood clots in the placenta.

I agree an ultrasound would be very good in your case.

ekcanada's picture
Joined: 05/06/09
Posts: 1707

"jonibug" wrote:

Did they actually LOOK at your cervix (like use a speculum)? I ask b/c I've had bleeding since 20 weeks off and on and they said my cervix is vascular, though still high and closed. But my bleeding is very different from yours. Before I got my ultrasound, they had mentioned the possibility of partial placental abruption or blood clots in the placenta.

I agree an ultrasound would be very good in your case.

They did both a speculum exam and a "finger exam". Cervix is high and closed and no obvious reason for the bleeding.

More spotting today so I don't know what to think!

Joined: 03/06/09
Posts: 1054

I second what Joy said. My aunt has Factor V Leiden in a mild form. With her last three pregnancies she had episodes of spotting from small areas of clotting/detachment. Her cervix was closed and high until the end of the pregnancy. They were all born full term and healthy, but it was very scary for her. Hopefully yours is nothing and will resolve on its own. An U/S would seem beneficial at this point for your own piece of mind and for the baby's sake.

heatherliz2002's picture
Joined: 02/02/08
Posts: 2273

I don't have any suggestions, just wanted to say that I'm thinking of you and I hope your doctors can get it figured out quickly! Definitely let us know what they say about the ultrasound.

Renee_S's picture
Joined: 08/05/09
Posts: 39

I'd ask for an u/s just for peace of mind. Sorry you're going through this!
I started pre term labor at 23 weeks and had it off and on the rest of the pregnancy. I started bleeding off and on at 32 weeks. They checked for previa several times, but it wasn't previa. They never had an explanation for the bleeding and at times it got pretty heavy. I delivered at 39w (induced) and everything was perfect with the placenta and baby. They guessed I just had a very vascular cervix but said they just didn't have a reason.