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I have a complete placental previa. I'm generally happy with my
OB (Dr. Lee), but I'm wondering if I should switch to a high
risk OB. When I asked her, she said it wasn't necessary as she
consults with one if she has questions, but I still wonder.
I'm at 25 weeks and will have another ultrasound at 28 weeks to
see if it has cleared up since my last ultrasound at 22 weeks.
I'm 35 and this is my first baby.
I'm no Dr. , but I did have placenta previa with my first child
and I worked directly with my regular ob. It's my understanding
that the the diagnosis is fairly common around the 20-week mark,
but that the situation often corrects itself over time when the
uterus grows (the placenta stays attached at the same place, but
it moves with the growing uterus so it can move out of the way
of the cervix.)
I had another ultrasound at 35 weeks and again at 38 weeks, just
in case. And in my cse, I ended up ''borderline'' by the final
test, so we had a scheduled cesarian at 39 weeks. In the end it
turned out that the placenta was an issue so it would have
likely resulted in sign. complications during delivery.
My ob delivery the baby and I went on to have a VBAC with my
second child. let me know if I can answer any other q's for
you. Good luck!
By all means see a specialist! I had a complete previa as well
as an accreta, and knowing that I had the best qualified OBs to
deal with it gave me strength and a measure of calm.
I highly recommend Dr. Mickye Adams for her expertise in high
risk pregnancies, as well as being a really smart and kind
person. She, along with Dr. Goldee Gross and Dr. Ed Blumenstock
(surgeon extraodinaire), were a great team, and I would do it all
over again with them.
I don't think you should neccesarily switch to a high-risk OB. As
any doctor will tell you, placenta previa is a relatively rare
condition that should be taken very seriously. I had partial
placenta previa when I was pregnant with my daughter, and my OB
told me that if the placenta moved and completely covered my
cervix that I would have to have a c-section (to attempt vaginal
delivery would be too dangerous, in other words). I had many
ultrasounds (for various reasons), and the placenta remained where
it was, partially covering my cervix. I made a 40-hour attempt at
vaginal birth, but had several life-threatening complications, the
least of which was excessive bleeding (otherwise known as
hemmorhaging) because of the placenta previa, and I ended up
having a c-section. You seem to trust your doctor in general, and
I should think she would know exactly what to do in the case of
full placenta previa (esp. since she has consulted w/a high-risk
OB). Good luck!
I'm a nurse practitioner specializing in Ob-Gyn. In placenta
previa, some portion of the placenta covers the cervix. When
the placenta is in this position, bleeding is more common during
the pregnancy, and especially during birth. If the previa is
present at the end of the pregnancy, you would be recommended to
have a cesarian to avoid hemorrhage. In partial placenta previa
only a portion of the placenta covers the cervix. This is a
relatively common finding at 20 weeks; In complete previa, the
entire cervix is covered by the placenta. This is less common,
although not rare.
Standard practice is to recommend ''pelvic rest'' until a follow-
up ultrasound indicates that the placenta is no longer covering
the cervix. (Although the placenta does not move, the growing
uterus causes the relationship between the cervix and the
placenta to change.) Pelvic rest means: don't have an orgasm,
avoid heavy lifting, and be gentle with athletic activities. If
you bleed, you should make contact with your health provider.
Partial previa resolves 90% of the time and you can go for
vaginal birth. Complete previa less commonly resolves and more
commonly causes bleeding so your provider should monitor more
I don't think it's necessary to see a specialist; it's just
important to have good communication, trust, and a clear plan
with your provider so that you are confident that you're
receiving the best possible care!
Hello Everyone -
I've just been diagnosed with placenta previa and placenta
accreta, am scared silly and would like to hear from others
who've gone through this.
I'm due in May and am wondering if anyone's had any luck with
alternative medicine, or anything that you might want to share
PLEASE, no horror stories, I've already got that covered.
Thank you for any feedback.
Owner of a Runaway Placenta
I had written a similar post in 2001 after being diagnosed with
complete placenta previa. Even though I dont have any
alternative medicinal suggestions, I wanted to write in to let
her know a happy ending to balance out the horror stories a
little. I am now the grateful and happy mother of a one year
My only suggestion would be to be as homebound and stress free
as possible for the last trimester. Fortunately, I was able to
work from home after the 32nd week. I had my mother stay with me
to mimimize the workload of a 20 month old ( my older child)and
that helped too. Staying horizontal rather than vertical helps
too. Do try to err on the side of caution. If in doubt, dont. Im
sorry I cant be of more help. I really feel your anxiety. Please
email me if you just want to talk to someone whos been there.
My sister-in-law had placenta previa with her thrid child --
very badly in that she bled on and off most of her pregnancy.
She delivered a healthy, full term baby girl. What worked for
her was taking it very, very easy -- her husband took the other
two children away a few times during the preg. so she could
have bedrest. This seemed to be the best - that and getting
used to bleeding thru pregnancy.
I was also diagnosed with partial placenta previa. It was scary
and really not what I wanted to hear as I was really committed
to having a natural birth. We did all the things we needed to
do in preparation for the birth we wanted to have and hoped for
the best. I was told there really wasn't much that could be
done, though it was suggested that I try some of the breech
baby techniques (which frankly I didn't do)to try to get the
placenta to move back. I would stop worrying about it(easier
said than done I know) and concentrate on this amazing
beautiful thing that is happening to you. A successful birth is
truly a healthy mom and a healthy baby and if that means a c
section than so be it. Good luck. By the way my placenta moved
back and we had a gorgeous healthy baby with no interventions.
I am 15 weeks pregnant and just been diagnosed with complete posterior
placenta previa. My
mind is reeling with confusion and questions about this. I dont fall into any
of the categories at
high risk for this, but there I have it- I am the statistic.
Can anyone with experience with this give me some insight on how they dealt
I went on the web but I found only extreme examples of women rushed to the
ambulances with complications and so on... Is that the norm? I would greatly
Also, would you recommend my seeing a specialist? My doctors well recommended
at this site-
Dr Huibonhoa at Omni OB/Gyn and she was my doctor for my earlier pregnancy ( i
19month old daughter), but Im just concerned whether this puts me into a high
To compound matters, I now live in Fremont, which is a ways from AltaBates in
option over there is Washington Hospital, but I hear neonatal unit is not as
good as at
AltaBates. In case of an emergency, I would be taken to Washington Hospital,
where my doc
does not have operating rights. In such a scenario, do you think I would be
better off finding
another doc affiliated to Washington? or do you think I should stick with
someone I have a
relationship with, even if she may not be able to help in an emergency....
Have so many conflicting thoughts... I hope someone can help...
I don't have a lot of advice for you but I thought I would share my
experience of partial placenta previa with you to hopefully reduce
some of the stress you are feeling about this. I was diagnosed with
partial placenta previa early in my pregnancy. I had lots of
ultrasounds throughout the pregnancy in hopes that the placenta would
move. It never did. At about 36 weeks they prepped me for a C-section
just to do an exam in case the placenta ruptured during the exam. It
did not. I kept holding out hope for a vaginal delivery. I saw
stories of women being rushed to the hospital and was pretty nervous
also. Six days past the due date I did begin to bleed, a cup or so
and then it stopped. My husband was not home and I couldn't reach him
so I called an ambulance. The bleeding stopped as suddenly as it
started but I felt safe with the paramedics on hand. Long story
short, there was no panic at the hospital. I did have to have the
C-section I didn't want. But I was able to be awake and frankly with
no "labor" involved the C-section was easier than the fairly easy
vaginal birth I had years before and this includes the recovery. I
think of course you should be very informed about your condition. But
I wanted you to know my experience with placenta previa turned out
just fine. This was my only high risk factor also but I believe that
it alone does qualify you as "high risk", but don't take that too
gravely. I would assume with complete previa they will schedule your
C-section and you won't have to get there in an ambulance. Good luck
and try not to worry, we are so lucky to have the medical care that
I too was diagnosed with complete placenta previa at 15 weeks. I had a
follow up ultrasound scheduled at 21 weeks, which showed that it had cleared
up. In those 6 weeks between ultrasounds I also looked online and saw all
those horror stories, especially in a chat room dedicated to the topic. Yes,
the worst cases are all quite frightening. In the end I concluded that the
women who were on bedrest were the ones who had time to write at length
about their bad experiences online. Those who no longer had this condition
later in their pregnancy stopped going to that chat room. Please keep in
mind that placenta previa goes away by 20 weeks in most cases. I cancelled
travel plans during this period. I also was concerned about getting to the
hospital in case of an emergency. It doesn't hurt to be cautious during this
period, but don't worry too much about it. Find time to enjoy your
pregnancy also! Last week I gave birth to a healthy baby girl and had no
complications. I hope the rest of your pregancy goes well.
I was diagnosed with placenta previa at a routine ultrasound apppointment
around my 20th week. I had no bleeding or any other symptoms & the doctor
suggested that the placenta might still "move up" by the end of my
pregnancy, but to also be ready for a possible c-section if it didn't. She
told me to refrain from any heavy lifting, exercise or intercouse as these
activities might cause bleeding, which leads to bedrest. I never did have
any bleeding or have to be on bedrest & in fact my pregnancy was fairly
uneventful except for the above. My placenta never moved up, though, & I
had a scheduled c-section one week before my due date. I've now got a
happy, healthy 15-month old daughter.
I was a little bummed out at first about having to have the cesarean but it
was also very uneventful & not too hard to recover from, but that's another
subject altogether. So placenta previa can be a very serious condition but
it can also be fairly mild, if the proper precautions are observed and you
don't have any bleeding. Or if you're lucky your placenta might move up and
you won't have to worry about it!
You might search the Web for a discussion group called "club previa," which
might lead you to a list that will answer some of your questions. Many of
the women there have had more severe cases than I did but it might help to
read about some first-hand experiences. I also used to post on the Usenet
newsgroup misc.kids.pregnancy, which you can reach from Google.com. Go to
google.com and click on "search groups," then type in placenta previa & see
what you get. Or you can post a question there & folks will try to help you
this page was last updated: Apr 25, 2006
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