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Can I be pregnant and still have vaginal bleeding?

Posted Dec 02 2008 12:04pm 2 Comments

Yes. Up to 25 percent of pregnant women have light vaginal bleeding, or spotting, during the first trimester. In most cases, spotting is not a sign of a problem. Light bleeding in the first trimester is often caused by the implantation of the fertilized egg in the wall of the uterus. This implantation bleeding usually happens 10 days or so after conception. Implantation bleeding is usually lighter and more irregular than a menstrual period.

But any vaginal bleeding during pregnancy or a suspected pregnancy should be taken seriously. If you are pregnant or think you are pregnant, you should always call your doctor if have any bleeding. She will be able to figure out if it is a sign of a problem.

Sometimes bleeding in early pregnancy can signal trouble. Call the doctor immediately if you have:

  • heavy bleeding,
  • bleeding with cramping, pain, fever or chills
  • bleeding that lasts more than 24 hours

Other common causes of vaginal bleeding in early pregnancy include:

  • Changes in the cervix: During pregnancy, there is more blood flowing to the cervix. So it is more likely to bleed. Sexual intercourse during pregnancy can sometimes cause a small amount of vaginal bleeding. Also, many women have spotting after a pelvic exam.
  • Miscarriage: Vaginal bleeding in the first trimester is sometimes a sign of a miscarriage.
  • Ectopic pregnancy: Vaginal bleeding, that often occurs along with some abdominal pain can be the sign of an ectopic pregnancy. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilized egg implants outside of the uterus, often in the fallopian tube. This is a serious condition that needs immediate attention. Ectopic pregnancies can not produce a healthy baby. Plus, untreated ectopic pregnancies can seriously harm or kill the mother.
Source: National Women’s Health Information Center, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,
Comments (2)
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I started my period on sept 2,09 and on sept 20,09 I spotted brown discharge for 2 days and it felt like i was going to start again, but i haven't, because my next period is due in october, is this normal? Or could there be something wrong?  
I think I might be pregnant but I appear to have started my period. My period is usually very heavy and painful for the first two days, but this time it is very light but I am still experiencing abdominal pain. Could this be vaginal bleeding and is it painful like a period?
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