Bleeding in Late Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a very sensitive issue. To give birth to a life is no mean job and hence requires utmost attention and care on the part of the entire family, not only the woman. But despite all the care, at times certain things happen that give the family the jitters because they are highly sensitive issues. And one such issue is late-pregnancy bleeding. Late-pregnancy bleeding actually refers to bleeding that takes place from the vagina of a pregnant woman after 5 months (20 weeks) of pregnancy. It is generally highly frightening for the mother as well as the rest of the family. And its basis lies totally in biology.

There may be several reasons for the occurrence of late-pregnancy bleeding. To explain a few:

• Placenta is a structure which attaches a fetus to the womb of the mother. It generally covers the womb opening. When in pregnancy, the cervix dilates and contracts, then blood vessels rupture and blood is released. It generally accounts for about 20% of all late pregnancy bleeding. This is called placenta previa.

• When the placenta detaches from the mother’s womb and due to this detachment, blood may accumulate in the space between the uterus and the detached placenta. This is termed as abruption. This may lead to high blood pressure and trauma.

• In certain very dangerous cases, the uterus of the mother may get ruptured and the baby may get injected into the abdomen. This is called uterine rupture and is an almost fatal situation for the mother and the baby. This occurs due previous surgeries or Cesarean deliveries. It may result in trauma and very severe complications.

• Fetal vessel rupture may occur if the blood vessels of the baby arising out of the umbilical cord may get connected to membranes instead of getting connected to the placenta. The blood vessels pass the entrance to the uterus.

• There may also be injuries of the vagina or the cervix or the uterus that may result in cancer as well as late-pregnancy bleeding. Hemophilia is another cause of late-pregnancy bleeding. However this is a very rarely occurring cause of late-pregnancy bleeding.
Late-pregnancy bleeding is a very serious issue and must be dealt with immediately. There are several problems that arise out of it. If the bleeding is severe and heavy, the result may be serious shock waves and in worst circumstances it may even cause collapse. It may permanently damage the urinary system by harming the kidneys and may cause clotting problems. In this case the blood supply to the mother’s uterus gets decreased and the baby may get badly affected by this problem. In very bad cases this may even be fatal to the child. Abruption is the major reason behind these problems. A slightly lesser grade of bleeding can easily cause anemia though it will not be fatal.

Hence these issues must not be ignored at any cost, for the cost to pay may be very high.