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To know if you are losing amniotic fluid, it is important to be aware of the presence of odorless transparent liquid in your panties, which can make your panties wet more than once a day.
If you suspect that you are losing amniotic fluid in the 1st or 2nd trimester of pregnancy, it is advisable to immediately go to the emergency room or obstetrician. The decrease in the amount of amniotic fluid during this period can directly interfere with the safety of pregnancy and the baby's development.
How to know if I am losing amniotic fluid
In most cases, the loss of amniotic fluid is just confused with the involuntary loss of urine that happens due to the weight of the uterus on the bladder.
A good way to confirm that the leak is really amniotic fluid is to put a tampon in your underwear and observe the characteristics of the liquid. Normally, urine is yellowish and odorless, while amniotic fluid is clear and odorless. In addition, the liquid released can also be just intimate lubrication, which has the consistency of egg whites.
Key symptoms and signs of amniotic fluid loss include:
- The panties get wet, but the liquid has no smell or color;
- Pants get wet more than once a day;
- Decreased movement of the baby in the uterus, when there has already been a greater loss of fluid.
Pregnant women with risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes or lupus are more likely to experience amniotic fluid loss, but this can happen to any pregnant woman.
Learn to identify the involuntary loss of urine during pregnancy, and what to do to control it.
What to do
Treatment for amniotic fluid loss varies according to gestational age:
In the 1st and 2nd quarter
Medical help should be sought immediately, but treatment is usually done with weekly visits to the obstetrician to assess the amount of fluid throughout pregnancy. When the doctor does the ultrasound and finds that the fluid is very low, it may be recommended to increase your water intake.
If there are no signs of infection or bleeding associated with fluid loss, the woman can be monitored periodically on an outpatient basis, in which the he alth team checks the woman's body temperature and performs a blood count to verify if there are signs of infection or labor. In addition, tests are done to assess whether everything is okay with the baby, such as auscultation of the baby's heartbeat and fetal biometry. Thus, it is possible to verify that the pregnancy is going well, despite the loss of amniotic fluid.
In the 3rd quarter
When the fluid lost is clear and happens after 37 weeks, this is usually not serious and usually indicates the start of labor. In these cases, the woman can stay at home for up to 18 hours, but after that period, she must go to the maternity hospital to have an evaluation with the obstetrician. Your doctor may recommend giving an antibiotic directly into your vein while you wait for labor to start.
If labor does not start after 24 hours, the obstetrician may recommend inducing labor.
In cases where the liquid has a greenish or brown color, it is advisable to go immediately to the maternity hospital or hospital, to identify the cause and assess the baby's vitality.
What can cause amniotic fluid loss
The causes of amniotic fluid loss are not always known. However, this can happen due to genital infections, which is why it is recommended to consult the obstetrician whenever symptoms such as burning when urinating, genital pain or redness arise, for example.
Other causes that can cause loss of amniotic fluid or lead to a reduction in its amount include:
- Partial rupture of the pouch, in which amniotic fluid starts leaking because there is a small hole in the pouch. It is more frequent at the end of pregnancy and normally the opening closes on its own with rest and good hydration;
- Problems with the placenta, where the placenta may not be producing enough blood and nutrients for the baby and the baby is not producing as much urine and there is less amniotic fluid;
- Medicines for high blood pressure as they can decrease the amount of amniotic fluid and affect the baby's kidneys;
- Baby anomalies: early in the second trimester of pregnancy, the baby may begin to swallow amniotic fluid and pass it out in the urine. When amniotic fluid is lost, the baby's kidneys may not develop properly;
- Feto-fetal transfusion syndrome,that can happen in the case of identical twins, where one can receive more blood and nutrients than the other, causing one to have less amniotic fluid than the other.
In addition, some medications, such as ibuprofen or high blood pressure medication, can also decrease the production of amniotic fluid and, therefore, the pregnant woman should inform the obstetrician before taking any medication.