Spotting during pregnancy: a detailed guide

Spotting during pregnancy and bleeding are very common, 25% of pregnant women experience some kind of spotting or bleeding during pregnancy. Is spotting during pregnancy normal? When is it a source of concern? Read this article to find out.

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Cherifa Sharaf
Published on:Aug 2nd 2022 |Updated on:May 10th 2024
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Is spotting during pregnancy normal?

Spotting during pregnancy is very common, but that doesn’t make it always normal, and it doesn’t always mean it is serious either. Therefore, you must see your doctor if you experience any spotting or bleeding, to check on the baby and the pregnancy. When you see your doctor describe the spotting in detail, whether it is just a few spots, or heavy bleeding, as heavy as a period or less, make sure to mention the color as well. Whether it is red indicating fresh blood, which in the early weeks of pregnancy can mean a possibility of a miscarriage, or if it is brown then it is a sign of older bleeding.

When to seek medical help

  •  In case of spotting or bleeding regardless of the amount of color.
  •  If you feel abdominal pain and cramps.
  •  In case you feel dizzy.

 

Causes of spotting during pregnancy

  • Miscarriage.
  •  Ectopic pregnancy.
  •  Preterm labor.
  • Molar pregnancy.
  •  Placenta previa.
  • Placenta Abruption.
  • Uterine rupture.
  • Intercourse, as the cervix becomes more sensitive.
  • Infections.
  •  implantation of the embryo.
  • Smoking.
  • Vaginal check-up.

In case you experience spotting during pregnancy you must not:

  • Have intercourse.
  • Use vaginal douches (they shouldn’t be used during pregnancy).
  • Use tampons.

Treatment of spotting and bleeding during pregnancy

Your OBGYN will treat the spotting or bleeding according to its cause. Therefore, it is essential not to ignore or undermine any spots when you are pregnant. Prenatal visits during the first trimester are very important to ensure the health of your pregnancy and to detect any issues early on. It is noteworthy that the vaginal ultrasound that we perform during the first three months is completely safe and doesn’t cause any spotting or bleeding. It is even safe in cases of Placenta previa when the vaginal examination is prohibited. Vaginal ultrasounds are a key tool to detect any issues with the pregnancy. In addition, vaginal check-ups might cause mild spotting but they are safe during pregnancy.

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Cherifa SharafObstetrics & Gynecology Consultant

Consultant of obstetrics, gynecology & Infertility, with years of experience in women’s healthcare. Dr.Cherifa is practicing at Qasr El Eyni Hospital/ Cairo University in addition to several other hospitals and centers in Cairo Egypt. She holds a Ph.D. in medicine from Cairo University in addition to the European Diploma of Operative Gynecology from Clermont-Ferrand, France, and Diploma of Management of Infertility from Antoine Béclère Faculty of Medicine Paris, France. Dr. Cherifa is very passionate about providing the appropriate health care to women and believes the overall health of a woman is key to her reproductive and maternal health. She is a strong believer in the importance of raising women’s awareness and educating them about everything related to health in general and reproductive health in particular.

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