Bleeding from birth canal after 24 weeks.
3-5% of pregnant women have some form of bleeding. 3x more common in multiparous women (had a baby before) than primiparous.
There are lots of potential causes for bleeding during pregnancy. (Well, bleeding from the vagina. Obviously being pregnant doesn't decrease your risk of getting paper cuts.)
- No cause - OK, so this is a bit of cop out but it's true in 40% of cases.
- Placenta praevia - the placenta is in the lower segment of the uterus, possibly covering the cervical os. This is graded I-IV depending on how far down it is.
- Placental abruption - this is the cause in 20% of cases and occurs in 1 in 200 pregnancies. Essentially, the placenta separates from the uterus and the blood collects between uterus and placenta.
- Uterine rupture - well, the uterus ruptures. This is only mentioned because it's incredibly serious.
- There are other causes such as infection, vasa praevia (bleeding from the foetal blood vessels) and inherited bleeding problems but these are either not serious or rarer.