Before we talk about placenta accreta, it is essential to know what is the placenta and its role during pregnancy. Therefore we will tell you that first.
The placenta is the vascular organ that develops during pregnancy to nourish the baby. It serves as a connection between the mother and the baby. Through the placenta, the baby exchanges oxygen and food with the mother. It is necessary for the growth and survival of the baby. Therefore if something is wrong with the placenta, it can adversely affect the baby.
During pregnancy, the placenta develops in the uterus and attaches to the uterine wall. The placenta is responsible for providing oxygen and nutrients to the developing fetus which is essential for its survival. Once a baby is delivered, the placenta detaches from the uterine wall in a normal pregnancy.
If you are pregnant, you should attend follow up visits with the healthcare provider. To get an expert opinion, you can consult the best gynecologist in islamabad.
In placenta accreta, the placenta grows too deeply into the uterine wall and does not detach after delivery. When a part of the placenta remains attached to the uterine wall, severe blood loss may occur, which can be life-threatening for the mother. The placenta is richly supplied with blood vessels. And if it bleeds, it can be severe. Often to combat it, doctors remove the uterus- a procedure known as a hysterectomy.
Placenta accreta is classified into three categories, based on how deeply the placenta has invaded the uterine wall:
- Placenta accreta: The placenta attaches too deeply to the uterine wall. However, it doesn’t pass through the uterus wall and does not influence the muscles of the uterus.
- Placenta increta: The placenta grows even deeper into the uterine wall. It is firmly attached to the uterus muscles.
- Placenta percreta: The placenta grows through the uterine wall and can attach to other adjacent organs, such as the bladder.
The exact cause of placenta accreta is unknown, but certain factors can increase the risk of developing this condition. These risk factors include:
- Previous cesarean delivery
- Previous uterine surgery
- Placenta previa
- Maternal age over 35
- Multiple pregnancies
- Assisted reproductive technologies
Placenta accreta may not cause any symptoms during pregnancy. However, some women may experience:
- Vaginal bleeding
- Preterm labor
- Pelvic pain
- Failure to progress in labor
Placenta accreta is typically diagnosed during an ultrasound or MRI. These imaging tests can show the depth of the placenta attached to the uterine wall. However, the woman might also have other symptoms or vaginal bleeding during pregnancy.
The treatment for placenta accreta depends on the severity of the condition and whether the woman wants to have more children in the future. In some cases, cesarean delivery may be scheduled before the due date to reduce the risk of complications. However, if the placenta has grown too deeply into the uterine wall, a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) may be necessary to prevent severe bleeding.
In some cases, a technique called balloon catheterization may be used to control bleeding during delivery. This involves placing a balloon in the blood vessels around the uterus and inflating it to stop the bleeding.
In summary, placenta accreta is a potentially life-threatening complication of pregnancy that can occur when the placenta grows too deeply into the uterine wall. If placenta accreta is diagnosed, early intervention is essential to prevent severe bleeding and other complications. Mostly your healthcare providers might advise you to bed rest to prevent placental bleeding. Make sure you follow the advice and rest well. With placental complications, don’t lift heavy weights or do physical exercises. You might also be advised to abstain from sex until delivery.
If you have a complaint of vaginal bleeding during the pregnancy, make sure to visit the healthcare provider. To get an expert opinion, you can consult Mamji Hospital.