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Things about placenta previa that pregnant women should know

Updated: 2020-12-24


1. What is placenta previa?

After the 28th week of pregnancy, the placenta attached to the lower uterine segment -- and even the lower edge of the placenta -- reaches or covers the internal cervical orifice and its position is lower than that during the fetal presentation.

Some women in the early period of pregnancy have a low placental position, known as placenta previa, but the placenta may migrate at a further stage. Pregnant women generally do not have to worry too much about the symptoms and may perform daily activities.

However, they need to avoid heavy physical work or strenuous exercise and seek prompt medical attention if they develop vaginal bleeding and abdominal pain.

One particular case of placenta previa is pernicious placenta previa: a specific type of placenta previa when the placenta covers the uterine scar resulting from a pregnant woman's previous cesarean section.

Central placenta previa and marginal placenta previa, with the placenta attached to the anterior walls of uterus, are prone to occur.

More than 50 percent of pregnant women with pernicious placenta previa often have placenta accreta, which increases the risk of a severe postpartum hemorrhage during delivery.

2. Risk factors that can easily cause placenta previa after pregnancy.

Multiple previous pregnancies.

The subject has received induced abortion or dilation and curettage (D&C) surgery.

Smoking or alcohol effects.

The subject has a problem with blood supply to the uterus.


3. What are the harms of placenta previa?

Recurrent vaginal bleeding, which may lead to anemia in pregnant women, partially causes infection or miscarriage. When severe vaginal bleeding occurs, it may endanger the life safety of the pregnant woman and her fetus. So, when painless vaginal bleeding occurs, please seek prompt medical treatment as soon as possible.

Some pregnant women have no vaginal bleeding symptoms during pregnancy and they need to be highly alert to the possibility of having placenta accreta.

4. Some tips for pregnant women.

Avoid excessive exercise.

Except for the need for bed rest during vaginal bleeding, strict bed rest is not required for the rest of the time and appropriate exercise is advocated.

When vaginal bleeding appears, pregnant women should go to see their doctors promptly. In the event of severe vaginal bleeding, the patient should seek medical treatment at the nearest medical institution first, where they can transfer to a specialist hospital when appropriate for further treatment.

5. Tips for choosing the mode of delivery.

Cesarean section is recommended -- except for marginal placenta previa with little vaginal bleeding, good intrauterine fetal condition and possible successful vaginal delivery in a short time.

Pregnant women with placenta previa, especially those with pernicious placenta previa, should have antepartum examinations on time, enabling timely detection and go to large hospitals with wide experience and good treatment conditions for treatment and delivery.

If you are suffering from placenta previa, the Ranjiaba branch of the Chongqing Health Center for Women and Children -- or the CQHCWC -- can offer you help and treatment.