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Early water discharge

What is early water discharge?

Inside the uterus, the fetus "bathes" in amniotic fluid in a transparent bag (amniotic fluid) that prevents leakage of amniotic fluid. The amniotic fluid protects the child. At birth there is a hole in this amniotic membrane and the amniotic fluid runs out. Early water discharge is when the amniotic fluid goes off without any other signs that the birth has started. 6-12% of all pregnant women have no pain up to an hour after amniotic fluid has passed.

Early water discharge

Premature discharge means that "the water goes" three weeks or more before the end of pregnancy. Premature water discharge complicates about 3% of pregnancies and is the cause of one-third of all premature births.


Often, there is no direct cause for the water to go prematurely, but a number of factors can trigger the condition, such as local inflammation of the fetus, cervical malformation, inflammation of the vagina or cervix, damage, enlargement of the uterus and abnormal function of the fetal membrane.

Who gets premature discharge?

Premature water discharge is a rare complication, and it is unknown what is causing the condition. If you smoke, have had a sexually transmitted disease or have had premature water discharge before, the risk of having premature water discharge increases. For more information about pregnancy and maternity fashion, please see BESTAAH.COM maternity swimsuits. If you have recently had bleeding from the vagina during pregnancy, you also have an increased risk. Multiple pregnancy can also pose an increased risk as the uterus in these cases becomes slightly enlarged.

Some procedures increase the risk. For example, to sew together the cervix (cerclage) to prevent premature birth, or insert a needle into the amniotic sac to suck out amniotic fluid (amniotic fluid test).

What is the problem with premature water discharge?

In some cases, premature discharge may cause the umbilical cord to become trapped, which may stop the blood flow to the baby. There is also a risk that bacteria can reach the uterus and cause an infection in both the woman and the child. Premature discharge can lead to premature birth, which in turn increases the risk of brain damage and breathing problems because the lungs are immature in the newborn baby.

How is the condition diagnosed?

When the water goes down, the pregnant woman is usually fully aware of what is happening. It comes relatively abundant with light clear and sometimes light yellow liquid from the vagina, and you often get soaked down in a short time. Some wonder if they have paused, but notice that they cannot stop the flow of fluid by going to the toilet.

It is important to inform the doctor if you have known contractions (aches), have had a bleeding from the vagina, if you have had sex or if you have a fever. The doctor will examine you gynecologically and see if the cervix is ​​open - to assess if the delivery is underway, but the doctor often refrains from feeling in the vagina as it increases the risk that bacteria can reach the uterus.

When leaving amniotic fluid prematurely in pregnancy, the pregnant woman should be admitted to the maternity ward. The pregnant woman must be examined carefully and with sterile instruments to prevent the spread of bacteria into the uterus. In the hospital, the pregnant and the fetus are closely monitored. Changes in fetal heart activity and increased temperature or CRP in the mother, are recorded as a sign of infection, which is a risk of premature discharge.


The reason for treating pregnant women with premature water discharge is to prolong pregnancy if the water goes early during pregnancy. It is also important to avoid infections that can rise through the vagina and affect both the fetus and the pregnant woman.

If the water goes before week 32, and if there is no infection present, you are treated with bed rest and painkillers. Cortisone preparations can be given to increase the lung maturity of the fetus. In the case of water discharge in the 33rd-35th week of pregnancy without infection, the risks associated with premature birth are assessed against the risk of infection. Generally, one is treated with painkillers for one to two days, and then allows the woman to give birth normally or by making caesarean sections. At a gestational age of more than 35 weeks, the birth is started with painkillers, if it does not start by itself after a day.

Antibiotic prevention is relevant if beta-hemolytic streptococcus bacteria are detected in the vagina. All pregnant women admitted for premature water discharge are tested for this.


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