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Postpartum bleeding/Getting a period after preterm labour

(10 Posts)
Seacrown Thu 19-Nov-15 19:12:56

Hi,
I always looked on mumsnet for advice and pointers, can't believe I'm posting on here in the loss section.
Our beautiful son was born at 25+3, surviving 4 days with a hole in his lung. My fiancée and I are completely devastated and trying to rebuild a sense of normality.
I'm trying to look ahead and want to have my body as back to normal as possible. I am possibly going to be having a colposcopy due to an ectropian but I wondered what people's experiences were in similar situations with bleeding and periods. It is 5 weeks tomorrow since I gave birth. Bleeding stopped over a week ago, although I am still having coloured discharge. What are your experiences with bleeding and subsequent return of periods? This was our first pregnancy and I feel so lost with everything that's happened. I just thought if I asked I could get a rough idea. My midwife says it's perfectly normal not to have had my period yet.
Thank you in advance

Blueskies80 Fri 20-Nov-15 20:05:43

So sorry for what you have been through flowers to you and your DH and for your amazing son xxxx
I haven't been through this myself aside from knowing it can take a while for periods to return after pregnancy. Hope it isn't too long a wait for you. Could you ask your Mw what is typical maybe, that might give you something to go on.
Again, so sorry for your loss xxxx

Hopefullyhoping Sat 21-Nov-15 12:34:16

I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of your precious son. I had a stillborn daughter due to a severe chromosome defect two weeks ago. I asked the midwife about my periods and she said she would expect them to be back and pretty normal from about 4 weeks after birth. I've no idea whether that's typical or not as she was our first child. The midwife also recommended that I see my doctor for a post natal check 6 weeks after birth so I'll probably ask him if they haven't turned up by then. I was 32 weeks pregnant, I don't know if that's significant

Seacrown Sat 21-Nov-15 15:26:22

Thank you so much for your replies. It breaks my heart that other people have had to go through what we have. I am so so sorry for your loss hoping, how are you coping with everything ? Have you had much support from the hospital? We have been extremely lucky in that sense, have seen lots of people but it's still hard. All I've been told is that 5 weeks to still have a little discharge and no period is normal, but if it isn't back in 6 months then they'd investigate. It's so hard to look to the future but I feel like this is something I can focus on. I've got my postnatal check next week so hopefully they can help ease my mind somewhat x

Hopefullyhoping Sat 21-Nov-15 18:44:05

Oh yikes, 6 months, really? I don't think I can wait that long! I hope not!

Hopefullyhoping Sat 21-Nov-15 18:47:34

We are coping as best we can to be honest! Some days are better than others. We knew from 20 weeks that stillbirth was the most likely outcome and we had lots of appointments and decisions to make. It was am incredibly difficult 12 weeks in many ways but it gave us time to adjust and prepare and fight and feel that we had done the best we could. That helps bring us some peace. But .... It's horrendous. It took us a very long time to conceive and I'm terrified that it won't happen a second time. And if it does, I start another round of being terrified - about something else.

blueobsessive Wed 25-Nov-15 17:03:12

Dear Seacrown and Hopefully. I am so sorry for your losses. I know it hurts so terribly. Virtual hugs to you both.

I lost our daughter at 19+ 4 a few months ago. I know the temptation to focus on when the next period might come. It was my main focus to start with. My cycles have now returned but it took more than 5 weeks. Mine is not an entirely standard history as a few weeks after delivery they found I had a retained placenta, then I had some haemorrhages, one an enormous one, then they discovered yet more placenta remaining - so I have just had another round of surgery a month ago.

What I learned in this horrible time has been to trust my body. My body told me to get back to the hospital after I delivered and to stick around like bad smell until they found out what was up. It also told me to get back in after the haemorrhages. Thankfully I did as it has turned out that I was right that things had not resolved both times. My body also somehow told me that the initial lack of periods wasn't a problem.

My advice would be to bear with your body as it physically recovers from birth. Certainly tell your gp at the 6 week check up and maybe also the bereavement midwife if there is one at your hospital and keep an eye on it. If it is worrying you before 6 months or behaves strangely go back to them and if it is feeling very odd, or as if everything might not all have left, ask them to arrange to scan you or rock up back at Epagu and pester them. If suggest bringing a photocopy of your post birth discharge summary with you to avoid the 1. Are you pregnant? 2. Have you had any children 3. Could you be pregnant questions. Saves a lot of upset and helped get me seen. On me, the trans vaginal scan showed both what was remaining (the problem) but also that my ovaries were just about to ovulate and the endometrium was growing (Good news). When going through such a rough time any good news can be cheering.

Our advice from the hospital was to wait 6 months to a year before ttc, which at the time the advice was given sounded like way too long to bear, and we initially thought we 'd ttc far sooner. 3 months later, it sounds about right. But everyone is individual.

Meanwhile be kind to yourselves. It totally sucks and you will remember your babies every day, and there will be days when you were far more upset than the day/ week before, but the vast pain and horror does ultimately lessen. Starting periods is just part of that. Good luck

blueobsessive Wed 25-Nov-15 17:11:14

Ps. Lots of mnetters on here do try sooner and have thrived. There is a support thread on here about ttc after a miscarriage or still birth (not the same thing, I know, but still a source of support). You are not alone in wanting to ttc, or in having worries about if there is a next time.

Seacrown Wed 25-Nov-15 22:48:52

Blueobsessive, your post really touched me. First of all let me say how sorry I am to hear about your daughter. I really dislike hearing that other people have had to go through this pain, and I so appreciate you responding to this post. It sounds like you have had such a traumatic time and to hear the positivity in your message is so touching. Everything you wrote I understand and could identify with. It has really filled me with hope. I understand what you mean about trusting my body, it's just hard to imagine a timeline. I feel physically fine and somewhat calmer now I have completely stopped bleeding, discharge. I just feel out of sync. Before being pregnant, knowing my cycle , I knew what signs to look for with ovulating and periods, but now it's like stumbling in the dark. Do you know how long it was roughtly between bleeding to getting your period again? I'm trying to remain calm and look to the future and keep busy and hopefully it will just appear. May I ask what a trans vaginal scan is? I've never heard of that. Does it help monitoring cycles etc? Thank you once again

Hopefully hoping, I can't imagine how you coped with knowing that for such a prolonged period, you are such a brave woman. I have the utmost respect for you and your family. How are you feeling physically? I really hope you are ok

blueobsessive Fri 27-Nov-15 09:22:19

Seacrown, I am glad my post helped. I'm afraid we are going to feel out of sync for a bit. One thing I gave myself a hard time for was 'failing' to get better in accordance with the expected timescale, so I will provide details of my experience with that caveat. That sort of worry is pointless.

I had a 'sort of' period about 6 weeks after delivering. Some bits felt like a period - the bleeding obviously- but the bleeding rate was different. I felt a bit pmt ish beforehand but it was different. A month later I had a more 'normal' feeling period- still not quite normal, but properly recognisable as one. I am currently expecting the third. Much more 'normal' pmt and yucky hair this time. It is odd, I've never felt so delighted to have a 'that time of the month', but as I said in my previous post, I rather grasp for anything remotely good at the moment.

A trans vaginal ultrasound is an ultrasound scan where they stick the probe up your,....well I think you might guess. It hurts less than a speculum and when the uterus has contracted it shows them a better view than a tummy one. That is how they saw the bits of remaining placenta and membrane in me. You are already having a coloposcopy to look at the little bit of something at your cervix so this might be a question which you could ask them when you have that, maybe?

It is very tempting to want to go nowhere near the hospital after our experiences for a bit, but if things aren't settling themselves, it just has to be done 'for the greater good' and all. In the meantime it sounds like you have a sensible plan.

Take care you both

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