What Is Subchorionic Hemorrhage?

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Subchorionic hemorrhage is a condition that causes bleeding in the early stages of pregnancy. It is typical during the first trimester. One of the main symptoms is vaginal bleeding. Typically, the bleeding will go away on its own.

This article discuss the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of subchorionic hemorrhage.

holding pregnant belly

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Bleeding and Pregnancy

If you are pregnant and experience any vaginal bleeding, call your healthcare provider.

Signs and Symptoms

One of the main symptoms of a subchorionic hemorrhage is bleeding.

The bleeding can range from a heavy flow to a lighter flow. Sometimes it can be as little as spotting. This is not the same as traditional spotting.

Other symptoms include cramping and pelvic pain. There are times when pregnant people do not have any symptoms, and the ultrasound will detect it.

Causes

There is no clear knowledge of the causes of subchorionic hemorrhage. When it does occur, there is bleeding under one of the membranes that surround the embryo.

There are reasons for spotting and bleeding during pregnancy, including:

  • Intercourse
  • Hormone changes
  • Expansion of the uterus

Heavier bleeding could be due to:

Research has shown that subchorionic hemorrhage is more frequent in frozen-thawed embryo transfer and in vitro fertilization (IVF) pregnancies.

Diagnosis

If a pregnant person is experiencing any type of bleeding, a healthcare provider should be contacted right away. The best way to determine a proper diagnosis for subchorionic hemorrhage is through an ultrasound.

There are times that there are no symptoms, and the ultrasound will detect it.

Treatment

Subchorionic hemorrhage typically goes away on its own. There is no specific treatment.

It is important to keep in contact with a healthcare provider so they can follow your condition. Getting plenty of rest and avoiding strenuous activities could help.

Risk Factors

The research varies on whether subchorionic hemorrhage causes complications with pregnancy itself.

There was a study that showed there is a potential association between subchorionic hemorrhage and the loss of the pregnancy and/or premature birth. There was another study that found that it didn’t increase the risk of pregnancy loss.

Coping

During your pregnancy journey, if there are any abnormalities or you don’t feel well, contact your healthcare provider right away. They can inform you of any outcomes and things to expect during your pregnancy.

If you have spotting or bleeding during any term while you are pregnant, contact your healthcare provider immediately.

A Word From Verywell

Pregnancy is a life-changing journey.

As a pregnant person, it is important to take care of yourself. If you are spotting or bleeding, contact your healthcare provider right away. Inform them of all your symptoms and concerns. They will be able to tell you what to do and how to handle the situation

It is very important to have the support and guidance of a healthcare provider. They can help ease any fears or concerns, and detect if there is anything to be concerned about. The best outcome is good health for the pregnant person and child.

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3 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. University of Michigan Health. Subchorionic hemorrhage.

  2. Asato K, Mekaru K, Heshiki C, Sugiyama H, Kinjyo T, Masamoto H, Aoki Y. Subchorionic hematoma occurs more frequently in in vitro fertilization pregnancy. Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2014 Oct;181:41-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ejogrb.2014.07.014

  3. Tuuli MG, Norman SM, Odibo AO, Macones GA, Cahill AG. Perinatal outcomes in women with subchorionic hematoma: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Obstet Gynecol. 2011 May;117(5):1205-1212. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e31821568de