Bleeding in Pregnancy

Bleeding in Pregnancy: Causes, Treatments, Prevention

Bleeding in pregnancy is a common complaint that pregnant women make when they come for Antenatal. Some ladies come to the hospital with complaints that they are ‘MENSTRUATING’ in the pregnancy, after noticing some amount of bleeding.

The truth is that you can not menstruate while pregnant. What you are experiencing is ‘BLEEDING’ in pregnancy, and any bleeding that occurs during pregnancy is an emergency. It might mean a lot of things, and most times, you are at risk of losing that pregnancy & having a miscarriage.

Bleeding in Pregnancy
Bleeding in Pregnancy

Causes of Bleeding in Pregnancy

Few reasons you may be bleeding in early pregnancy (First Trimester)

  • Implantation bleeding
  • Miscarriage
  • Cervical polyps
  • Infections
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Molar pregnancy
  • Increase blood flow in the cervix

Implantation bleeding

This is usually noticed around the same time you are supposed to see your normal monthly flow, hence, some women confuse it for the flow. This happens due to the implantation of the baby, into the womb (endometrium) of the mother. When this happens, they may notice some bleeding. It is not much and is not usually significant.


This is the most common cause of bleeding in early pregnancy. The miscarriage can be due to several factors such as rhesus incompatibilityinfections, uterine abnormalities, etc. When this happens, the pregnancy would go away on its own. You can read more about Miscarriages here

Ectopic Pregnancy

This occurs when the pregnancy develops outside the womb, rather than in the womb. It can develop anywhere from the Fallopian tube to the abdomen. Because the pregnancy cannot progress, it would break down, and there would be bleeding, usually with lower abdominal pain. This usually happens anytime from the 4th week to the 8th week of pregnancy. Read more on Ectopic Pregnancy here.

Molar Pregnancy

This is simply a pregnancy without a viable baby, hence, the pregnancy would break down leading to bleeding and clearance of the womb.


Several infections can lead to miscarriage and subsequent bleeding in pregnancy. Examples of such infections are; cytomegalovirus, toxoplasmosis, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), influenza virus, and vaginal infection with bacterial vaginosis.

Other conditions that can cause bleeding in pregnancy are as follows;

  1. Cervical polyps
  2. Increase blood flow in the cervix

What do I do if I have Bled in Pregnancy?

Bleeding in Pregnancy as we mentioned before is an emergency. Once you notice that you are bleeding, it means you might be about to have a miscarriage, and you should urgently get to the hospital to seek medical care, identify the cause and rectify it and know if you can save your pregnancy.

Feel free to ask any questions you might have below.

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