Bleeding in Pregnancy – When to Worry?

I've been having cramps and now there's blood, too...my due date is two weeks from now, is this normal?

Spotting vs Bleeding

The occasional spotting can be caused by a number of things and while it's probably nothing to worry about you should always err on the side of caution, if you are pregnant. Bleeding in the third trimester is never normal. Light to heavy blood loss is usually a sign of something more serious and should be treated urgently.

What could be the cause?

An ‘implantation bleed’ can happen as the embryo invades the lining of the womb. This happens before a pregnancy test is even positive and can often be confused for a period. Other causes of first trimester bleeding include miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy. Miscarriage can occur in the second trimester as well and can often be due to problems with the cervix holding the pregnancy or even infection.  Later in pregnancy bleeding can happen with threatened preterm labour or low lying placenta.  

How about bleeding in later stages of pregnancy...

You may get a 'show' of blood a few days before your contractions start as the mucus plug which blocked the cervix comes away in preparation for birth. This is quite normal. But, if you have heavy bleeding and pain it could indicate one of a number of serious complications: Placental abruption, a low lying placenta, or vasa praevia (a very rare condition). Each of these serious indications can prove dangerously affect you and your baby.

When is it time to call the doctor?

Bleeding in pregnancy is generally not normal so it is always worth notifying your doctor or midwife.. If you are experiencing heavy bleeding and or painful cramps then don't hesitate to go the your local emergency centre. Time is of the essence!

 

Do you have questions about your pregnancy? Let our experts help!

Bleeding in Early Pregnancy