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Implantation bleeding or miscarriage?

Implantation bleeding in early pregnancy is perfectly normal. Knowing the difference between implanation bleeding and other more serious conditions is crucial.


If you are pregnant, it is natural to experience vaginal bleeding known as implantation bleeding.


It can seem like a light period.


Miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, and infection can also cause bleeding during early pregnancy.  Those more serious events are why many women are concerned when they discover implantation bleeding.


No matter the reason, it is important to seek medical attention if you have bleeding during pregnancy.


Implantation Bleeding


Implantation bleeding can happen during the very early stages of pregnancy.


It will likely appear as a small amount of blood on your underwear or toilet paper right around the time when you first test positive on a pregnancy test.


Implantation bleeding usually occurs within two weeks after fertilization.  Since this timing is right around when you’d expect a monthly period, this bleeding could be mistaken for an extremely light menstrual period.


The bleeding usually occurs around ten days after conception.  It signifies that a fertilized egg has implanted to the wall of a woman’s uterus.


Implantation bleeding is not a cause for concern.  It does not negatively impact the viability of a pregnancy.


Similarly, not having implantation bleeding is also perfectly fine.


Take a pregnancy test if you have unusually light bleeding around the time of your normal period.


A lighter than usual flow should not be taken as a period or as a sign that you are not pregnant.  The spotting may be implantation bleeding.


Distinguishing Implantation Bleeding From an Early Miscarriage


The most common fear associated with bleeding during pregnancy is miscarriage.


If you experience bleeding when trying to get pregnant, or when you know you’re pregnant, it is natural to be concerned.


Knowing the difference between implantation bleeding and bleeding of an early miscarriage can be hard to decipher.


Bleeding From a Miscarriage


In general, bleeding during an impending miscarriage or a nonviable pregnancy may begin as spotting.  After some time it will turn into a heavier flow similar to a heavy menstrual period.


Cramping and passing tissue through the vagina are other signs of a miscarriage that are usually not present in implantation bleeding.


Bleeding From Implantation Bleeding


In contrast, implantation bleeding may appear as a lighter discharge.  It will only last a few days at maximum.


Pregnancy Tests


The most effective way to determine the cause of bleeding during pregnancy is to visit your doctor.


A doctor may recommend a blood test or an ultrasound.  They will also take a medical history and physical exam.


Other Causes of Vaginal Bleeding During Early Pregnancy


Many pregnant women experience light bleeding after sex.  Or after a pelvic exam, due to the presence of blood vessels in the cervix.


Bleeding during pregnancy may be a sign of an infection in the cervix.


It may also be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy.


Ecotpic pregnancies occur when a fertilized egg implants into one of the Fallopian tubes instead of the the uterus. Symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy may include pain in the abdomen, pelvis, or shoulders.


It is important to seek medical attention if you are experiencing these symptoms. If the fertilized egg is in Fallopian tube it will likely need to be removed with surgery or medication.


If you are experiencing bleeding during pregnancy, please contact your doctor immediately.


There are many reasons why pregnant women experience spotting in early pregnancy.  These can be benign causes like implantation bleeding or bleeding after sex.


Your doctor can identify the cause of your bleeding and treat you as necessary.