Placenta previa


Placenta is a pancake sized thing which is at the top of the uterine wall that provides the nutrients needed for the baby through the umbilical cord. Placenta Previa is a condition where the placenta is low-lying. Its common in the early months of pregnancy and in some cases placenta moves upwards as the pregnancy advances.

Causes of Placenta Previa:

The causes of placenta previa are the following-

  • The exact reason is unknown.
  • A research study has revealed that due to previous scars , or infection.This leads to placenta previa.
  • Multiple pregnancy.
  • Smoking women.
  • Defective placenta.
  • Abnormal uterus.
  • Maternal age.
  • Multi-Parous women.(Previous multiple pregnancies).
  • Race. Some studies have found that people from Asia and Africa are more prone to placenta previa.

Types of placenta previa:

The types of placenta previa are classified according to their placement.

  • Type-1 or Low lying: It does not cover the cervical orifice but is to the lower segment.
  • Type-2 or Marginal:In this type the placenta is in touch with cervix but does not cover.
  • Type-3 or Partial:The placenta covers the cervix partly.
  • Type-4 or Marginal:The cervical orifice is completely covered with placenta.

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Painless Bleeding from the vagina that happens in the end of 2ndtrimester or starting of the 3rd trimester.
  • Cramping uterine pain in some cases.
  • Ultrasound can diagnose the type of placenta previa.
  • Sometimes severe bleeding which results in the death of the fetus and the mother.


  • The mother should be advised to take complete bed rest.
  • Vaginal examinations should not be done.
  • If there is severe hemorrhage,the mother should be taken to the gynecologist immediately.
  • Elevate the leg with pillows to control bleeding.
  • There are support groups for mothers suffering from placenta previa.
  • Psychological support to the mother because they undergo lots of fear and anxiety.
  • If the bleeding is severe then immediate Cesarean section is done even if it is a premature birth.


  • Its always better for a mother suffering from placenta previa to be kept under close supervision because its a very dangerous condition where the mother and the baby’s life is at risk.

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