Am I Leaking Amniotic Fluid

Leaking amniotic fluid can be a serious problem. Amniotic fluid is literally the lifeblood of your unborn baby. If your fluid is leaking, the chances of a premature delivery, as well as infection to the fetus, go up. PPROM (preterm premature rupture of membranes) means amniotic fluid is leaking sometime prior to 38 weeks of gestation. If there is an amniotic leak, it could be due to a bacterial infection, a defective amniotic sac, or because some type of injury or trauma has occurred to the mother. In many cases of PPROM, the end result is premature labor.

What To Look For
It's important to remember that infection can set in well within 24 hours of leaking amniotic fluid. If you feel you are leaking amniotic fluid, it's important to contact your physician for advice first. If you are not able to contact your physician, jot down the time so that when you are able to contact your doctor you can tell her exactly when you first noticed you were leaking. Premature labor can begin any time a pregnant woman begins to leak amniotic fluid.

While every pregnant woman is different, most women experience some leakage during pregnancy, and that leakage is often urine, especially during the last trimester. This leakage is caused by the pressure the baby is exerting on the mother's bladder. However, if you experience leakage following amniocentesis or a regular prenatal exam, if there is a tinge of pink to the fluid or it is accompanied by mucus, it's important to contact your doctor to make sure you are not leaking amniotic fluid.

When Your Water Breaks
When a pregnant woman's water breaks, it means the amniotic sac has ruptured and birth is imminent. The water can break in two ways: a gush or a trickle. The trickle is what most women feel as leakage, and they assume that their water has broken. Keep in mind that, when leaking urine, it will also be a trickle or a small gush when you stand up or sit down. Knowing the difference is important because it can keep the stress and fear factor to a minimum. Your physician can perform a simple noninvasive test with litmus paper that will determine for sure whether it is amniotic fluid or simply urine.

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