Is Vaginal bleeding Normal in pregnancy?

Causes and recommendations


Bleeding in pregnancy can be a cause for concern. In early pregnancy it is normal for a slight loss, implantation bleeding , to occur , but in more advanced stages it can be indicative of a problem.

It is important for the pregnant woman to know that bleeding does not always mean that there is a serious problem. According to experts, up to 10% of pregnant women experience vaginal bleeding during some time during pregnancy.

Below you have an index with the 6 points that we are going to deal with in this article.

Causes of bleeding in pregnancy

Small vaginal bleeding or leakage usually occurs in the first trimester of pregnancy, although bleeding or bleeding is also possible in the second and third trimesters of pregnancy.

The main causes of vaginal bleeding during pregnancy can be different depending on the time of pregnancy in which they occur.

Bleeding in the first trimester

During the first trimester, it is more common to have light bleeding. It can occur for the following reasons.

  • Implantation bleeding: this is bleeding at the beginning of pregnancy, in the first weeks, when the embryo attaches itself to the wall of the uterus to start embryonic development. It may bleed a little, either brown or pinkish or red in color. This happens before the expected date of arrival of the period and is a very light bleeding.
  • Ectopic pregnancy : occurs when the embryo implants in a different place in the mother's uterus, such as in the fallopian tubes.
  • Miscarriage : is the loss of pregnancy. Normally in this case, the bleeding occurs with pain that is stronger than the period.
  • Intrauterine hematomas : these are crescent-shaped structures formed by the appearance of small pools of blood between the chorionic tissue and the superficial layers of the endometrium . When these bruises appear, pregnancy is considered high risk.

In case of suspected ectopic pregnancy or spontaneous abortion, a doctor should be consulted quickly.

Bleeding in the second trimester

During the second trimester of pregnancy, losses may occur due to:

  • Changes in the cervix: they occur during pregnancy in preparation for childbirth, since more blood flows to this area.
  • Placenta previa : it is detected in the ultrasound that is performed before the 20th week of pregnancy . Bleeding occurs in large amounts and is a serious situation. The placenta is too low in the uterus, thus partially or completely enveloping the birth canal. The bleeding is painless and bright in color.

Bleeding causes in the third trimester

During the third trimester of pregnancy, bleeding can occur due to:

  • Premature detachment of the placenta: It can occur in the last 12 weeks of pregnancy , that is, between the 29th week of pregnancy and the 40th week .
  • Premature delivery (with bleeding).

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At any time during pregnancy

Also, at the beginning, in the middle and at the end of the pregnancy, bleeding may appear due to:

  • Trauma to the cervix: from sexual intercourse or after a pelvic exam. In these cases the amount of bleeding is small.
  • Infection in the cervix .
  • Medications or diseases .

Spotting or bleeding?

On many occasions the pregnant woman is scared by a small spotting or release of vaginal discharge with blood in pregnancy, but she must know that this is normal and that in principle it does not have to be alarming.

It is important to know how to distinguish between spotting and bleeding so you do not worry about more or have to go to the doctor when it is not necessary.

The vaginal spotting is presented as a few drops of blood released by the vaginal occasionally, so they appear a few spots on the underwear. The intensity of color is usually slight as well as the amount, although a sanitary napkin is not covered.

On the other hand, vaginal bleeding is more abundant, intense and continued over time. In case of bleeding, it will be necessary to use a sanitary napkin so that the blood does not soak the clothes or cause discomfort and irritation of the genital area.

What should I do if I have bleeding during my pregnancy?

At the time of vaginal bleeding, severe pain, acute pain in the abdomen, discharge with tissue, etc. you should see a doctor quickly. This will make a diagnosis and propose a treatment based on each particular case.

  • In the case of a miscarriage: the prescription of antibiotics to fight infections and blood transfusions if severe blood loss occurs.
  • In case of an infection in the vagina or cervix: the prescription of antibiotics that do not harm the baby.
  • In the case of an ectopic pregnancy: Surgery or medical treatment will need to be performed to remove the growing embryo and control internal bleeding.
  • In case of vaginal bleeding caused by placenta previa: you will have to rest in the hospital, at least until the bleeding disappears. If it occurs very close to the due date or if it continues, a cesarean section will be performed.

In any case, sexual intercourse should be avoided until the causes of the bleeding are known, tampons not being used, or douching.

It is important to observe the characteristics of the bleeding : duration of bleeding, whether it is light or heavy, actions or activities that the pregnant woman does to increase or decrease bleeding, etc. By having this information in advance, the doctor is helped so that he can indicate the causes of the bleeding and if it is dangerous for the mother or her baby.

Questions about vaginal bleeding

What can indicate a spotting in the second month of pregnancy?

The spots are very frequent in the first trimester of pregnancy. Any spotting in the first trimester is considered a threatened miscarriage .

Spotting can be due to different causes. The most important thing is to go to the gynecologist who takes your pregnancy to find out the origin. Possible causes include a hematoma, low insertion placenta, polyp on the cervix, etc.

Is it bad or normal for a pregnant woman to bleed?

It will depend mainly on the reason for the bleeding. Generally, slight bleeding is not a cause for concern, it is considered normal. However, if it is abundant, causes pain or lasts over time, it may be indicative of some pregnancy complication and it is advisable to see a doctor.


What should I do if I have heavy bleeding during pregnancy?

Faced with heavy bleeding, the woman should go immediately to the doctor. The same occurs when severe pain appears or the bleeding extends over time.

Can bleeding during pregnancy be menstruation?

No, when the woman is pregnant, menstruation does not occur . The rule only occurs when fertilization and implantation have not occurred, since if the embryo manages to implant in the endometrium, the pregnancy hormone is produced, which prevents the period from occurring.

If menstruation were to occur while the woman was pregnant, the baby could not develop, since the placenta and the bag in which the baby is contained would detach from the uterus and would be expelled to the outside through the vagina.

If you want to know more about menstruation in pregnancy, access this link: Can I have menstruation during pregnancy?

How many days can you bleed while pregnant?

Bleeds that are within the normal range are of short duration and are usually only slight spotting. When the cause is unusual or serious, bleeding can be prolonged, so it is important to see a doctor to control the bleeding.

Is Vaginal bleeding Normal in pregnancy? Causes and recommendations

By pregnancysigns

Is Vaginal bleeding Normal in pregnancy? Causes and recommendations

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