How to manage postpartum hemorrhage after delivery


October 4, 2016

Management of Postpartum Hemorrhage

Delivery is one of the most beautiful and relaxing moment in the life of parents, not only because they are finally able to touch and see their baby after waiting for 9 months, but also because mother is now able to enjoy her life after 9 months of pregnancy related symptoms.
However, in some pregnant women, some delivery related complications may make the happy moments sour by prolonging hospital stay, health issues and other more grave complications. One of a very common delivery related complication is postpartum hemorrhage.

Introduction to Postpartum hemorrhage:

Postpartum hemorrhage is referred to as blood loss of more than 500 mL after delivery. This complication is observed in almost 18 percent of births. Blood loss in huge amounts after delivery is an alarming condition and it should not be taken lightly. Blood loss of greater than 1000 mL requires blood transfusion to avoid hypotension or low blood pressure.

Risk factors for postpartum hemorrhage:

If you have any of the following conditions, you are at risk of developing postpartum hemorrhage:

  • Multi-gravida: If it is your fourth or fifth pregnancy, your uterine muscles remain relax after delivery leading to substantial blood loss.
  • Twin pregnancy: Bleeding after delivery stops when muscles of uterus contract in an attempt to go to their pre-pregnancy size. However with twin pregnancy, it takes them longer due to over-stretching of muscles; hence leading to post-partum hemorrhage.
  • Bleeding tendency: some women bleed because of some inherited bleeding disorders.

Complications of Postpartum hemorrhage:

Presently this problem is the major cause of maternal morbidity and death all over the world. The postpartum hemorrhage is not the only problem implicating the women’s health but it comes with other problems as well like hypotension, anemia, and fatigue and weakness. All these problems make it difficult for the mother to provide enough maternal care to the baby. Therefore proper management and cure of this issue is extremely important.

How to prevent postpartum hemorrhage?

Among the management strategies of the postpartum hemorrhage, the best ones include:

  • Active management of third stage of labor (any carelessness during this stage, increases the chances of postpartum hemorrhage)
  • Other active management strategies involve the administration of drugs that maintain tone of uterine muscles during delivery.
  • Properly controlled cord traction along with the early clamping and cutting of cord also helps in preventing the postpartum hemorrhage to a great extent.

How to manage postpartum hemorrhage?

Although a great deal of management and care is take in order to manage the postpartum hemorrhage, but still the occurrence of cases of postpartum hemorrhage are quite high. Once postpartum hemorrhage occurs, it can be managed by:

  • Maintaining the level of hydration by giving extra fluid via intravenous route to maintain blood pressure.
  • Along with fluids, arrange blood also for transfusion, in case of substantial blood loss.
  • Moreover, in order to make up for the blood loss, continue taking Iron and Folic acid supplements even after delivery for 6 months. In most cases, women already know if they are having any of the above risk factors, in that case strictly continue supplements throughout pregnancy.

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