Information for Patients
Bleeding is the loss of blood. It can happen outside or inside the body. You may bleed when you get a cut or other wound. Bleeding can also be due to an injury to internal organs.
Sometimes bleeding can cause other problems. A bruise is bleeding under the skin. Some strokes are caused by bleeding in the brain. Other bleeding, such as gastrointestinal bleeding, coughing up blood, or vaginal bleeding, can be a symptom of a disease.
Normally, when you bleed, your blood forms clots to stop the bleeding. Severe bleeding may require first aid or a trip to the emergency room. If you have a bleeding disorder, your blood does not form clots normally.
While childbirth usually goes well, complications can happen. They can cause a risk to the mother, baby, or both. Possible complications include
- Preterm (premature) labor, when labor starts before 37 completed weeks of pregnancy
- Problems with the umbilical cord
- Problems with the position of the baby, such as breech, in which the baby is going to come out feet first
- Birth injuries
For some of these problems, the baby may need to be delivered surgically by a Cesarean section.