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Preterm labour
Preterm labour

Things you need to know

Things you need to know

What is preterm labour?

What is preterm labour?

A normal pregnancy usually lasts 40 weeks. When a pregnant woman experiences contractions before the estimated time (early than 37 weeks), it is considered preterm labour. 

 

The early onset of labour result in the opening of your cervix after 20 weeks or before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Preterm labour can lead to premature birth which can increase the risk of certain health problems in your baby such as cerebral palsy. 

Preterm labour symptoms

Preterm labour symptoms

Preterm labour leads to certain changes in your cervix including its thinning and dilation. These changes can lead to the following preterm labour symptoms:

 

Causes of preterm labour

Causes of preterm labour

The exact causes of preterm labour are not known. Some common causes include:

 

Risk factors of preterm labour

Risk factors of preterm labour

Preterm labour can affect any pregnant woman, however, some women have a higher risk than others. Common risk factors leading to the causes of preterm labour include:

 

Preterm labour management

Preterm labour management

Your healthcare provider will discuss your medical history and evaluate your risk of preterm labour. Common tests which are done to diagnose premature labour include:

 

Once preterm labour has started, there are no clinical procedures to stop it. If you are at an increased risk for premature labour, your obstetrician will help manage or prevent preterm labour through the following protocols:

 

FAQs
FAQs

Preterm labour can stop on its own in some cases. While in others, it continues to make way for preterm birth. Your healthcare provider will evaluate your condition and try to prevent preterm birth to help manage the health of you and your fetus.

You can prevent preterm labour by living a healthier lifestyle, avoiding tobacco consumption and eating a nutrient-dense diet with increased folic acid.

Premature birth happens before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Extremely preterm births happen between 23-28 weeks of pregnancy.

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