What is Placenta Previa?
Placenta Previa essentially means ‘placenta first’
In a normal pregnancy, the Placenta implants on the uterine wall. Placenta Previa is when the placenta implants partially or entirely over the cervix. This can block the baby’s passage into the vagina for birth. This means the baby cannot be born vaginally.
Placenta Previa can cause severe bleeding from the vagina.
What causes Placenta Previa?
Those who have had more than one c-section are more likely to develop Placenta Previa
Those who have previously had Placenta Previa
Giving multiple births (large placental area), or have had more than 1 baby
Scars on the uterine lining
What are the symptoms?
Sudden, painless, leaking blood from the vagina. This is because as the pregnancy progresses, particularly in the later stages, the bottom part of the uterus thins and spreads to accommodate for the growing baby. This thinning and spreading separates the placenta and this is what causes the bleeding.
Tightening of the uterus
No symptoms at all
How is it tested?
Ultrasound can identify the position of the placenta
What is the treatment?
No sex, as this can cause the Placenta Previa bleed
Sometimes the Placenta moves back to the normal position
Treatment is different for each individual, but can range from bed rest, hospitalisation, close monitoring, and blood transfusion.