Congratulations! Your pregnancy test just came back with a big fat positive. You’re pregnant. This will be a time of excitement, change and anxiety, especially if you’ve been spotting. It can be unnerving to see that spotting when you are pregnant, but it doesn’t always mean disaster. There are a number of things that can cause spotting while you are pregnant. Talk to your doctor to get confirmation that everything is still proceeding as it should.
After conception, the fertilized egg must implant itself into the walls of your uterus. This can happen before you even realize that you are pregnant. When the egg burrows into your uterine lining it can cause bleeding. You may not see this blood for a day or two after implantation, so the spotting can be light pink to dark brown.
This can cause spotting whether you are pregnant or not, and the spotting will probably continue until your hormones balance out. Progesterone is the hormone that your body creates after ovulation. It keeps the body from beginning the next cycle while the lining in the uterus builds up and a fertilized egg implants. When progesterone drops, your next period begins. If your progesterone is low, you may experience spotting before a period or during early pregnancy. Low progesterone can be treated with a hormone pill prescribed by your doctor.
Irritation of the Cervix
The cervix can bleed when it is irritated, whether you are pregnant or not. It can be irritated by intercourse or by an internal exam such as a pap smear. The spotting should be light, and should not turn to dark blood or be a heavy flow, unless you are expecting your period. If the spotting does turn to bleeding or if you continue to spot, call your doctor and ask her to check for possible medical problems.
There are some pregnancy complications that can cause you to spot or even bleed heavily. These include miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy (when the egg implants in the fallopian tubes), placental abruption (the placenta separates from the uterus), placenta previa (the placenta is down at the bottom of the uterus) or preterm labor. If you are experiencing spotting during pregnancy, see your doctor to ensure that there are no complications, especially if the spotting is accompanied by pain or cramping.