A Breakthrough Bleeding Pregnancy: 5 Reasons Bleeding May Occur


You’ve had breakthrough bleeding during pregnancy, and you’re scared out of your senses. The good news is that breakthrough bleeding isn’t much to worry about – in most cases. And you should know that breakthrough bleeding is defined as bleeding that occurs at any time outside of your menstrual cycle.

Approximately 25% of women will suffer from breakthrough bleeding when pregnant.

The following are reasons why you may be bleeding:

Reasons for Breakthrough Bleeding During Pregnancy

1. Implantation Bleeding

Breakthrough bleeding in pregnancy
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You may have experienced implantation bleeding, or bleeding that occurs when the fertilized egg attaches to the uterine wall. This occurs at the very start of your pregnancy and should only last a day or two at most.

Many women view this as the first sign that they’re pregnant.

2. “Breakthrough Bleeding”

When you’re pregnant, your hormones may be going wild. The hormones that are responsible for stopping you from getting your period may still not be at the right levels. In essence, these hormones can trigger slight bleeding.

You may even feel:

This bleeding presents itself at the 4, 8 and 12-week mark for some women.

Your placenta should start producing enough hormones after the 12-week mark that you don’t experience anymore bleeding.

3. Miscarriage

Couple crying inside the car
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There are obvious threats of miscarriage when you are bleeding while pregnant. Miscarriage occurs far more often than women think, about 33% of pregnancies, or 1-in-3, will end with a miscarriage. And you should know that this number drops significantly following the first trimester.

If you do miscarry, it will be accompanied by blood, often mistaken for breakthrough bleeding, and other symptoms. A few of the symptoms you may be experiencing, include:

It’s important that if you do experience any of these symptoms or bleeding that is heavy, contact your doctor immediately and have an examination done. There is a chance that you have miscarried, or that your baby is at risk as a result.

4. Ectopic Pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy conception
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Women that have breakthrough bleeding during pregnancy may be having an ectopic pregnancy. This occurs when the egg attaches itself outside of the uterus. Normally, the egg during an ectopic pregnancy will attach to the fallopian tube. Severe pain down one side of your abdomen may be felt at this time.

If you have experienced this pain and it suddenly disappears, contact a medical professional immediately.

It is possible that the tube has ruptured. When the tube ruptures, you will be free from pain for a few hours before it comes back severely. Internal bleeding and serious complications can occur following the fallopian tube rupturing, so seek medical attention immediately.

[Read more about Ectopic Pregnancy]

5. Uterine Fibroids

Uterine fibroids details
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Uterine fibroids can lead to bleeding even while pregnant. This occurs due to compacted muscle and fibrous tissues inside or outside of the uterine wall. The location of the fibroids will determine the severity of the issue.

For some women, fibroids are nothing to be concerned about, but for others, they’re a major concern. Doctors believe that these fibroids are caused by the body’s increase in hormones. Women that have uterine fibroids will want to consult with their doctor to suggest the best measures to take to ensure the fibroids do not interfere with pregnancy.

Breakthrough bleeding during pregnancy should never be heavy. Some women will experience spotting or slightly heavier bleeding, but if you experience a decent volume of blood, make sure that you contact your doctor immediately. Anything from implantation to rough sex can cause vaginal bleeding, and if you’re pregnant, bleeding may be the first sign of something majorly wrong internally.

It’s always better to be safe than sorry and have an examination if you’re pregnant and experience bleeding.


  1. Hi I’m about 5 weeks and 6 days today I was 10 days late, and two days ago I started bleeding but its not heavy at all very light it doesn’t fill the pad but I’m so concerned, is this normal. Am I even pregnant. I didn’t know I was pregnant until my mom old me I was. This is also my first pregnancy.

  2. I’m 6weeks 5days i started to bleed 5 days ago not heavy no cloths no cramps not to fill a pad either only change do to the scent sorry tmi. I went to er seen baby and sac don’t know where the bleeding is coming from says everything looks good just seems like a previous pregnancy where I still had a period for 3 months. Ob appt is 3/8/18 I’m so ready to make sure all is good with my baby.

  3. I’m about 6 weeks and I’ve been bleeding for the past 2 weeks. I was previously on the 2 month injection and had my last shot early December of 2017, late March 2018,i had my period for 5 days and a few days later I bled for 7 days, I was then late in May which was when I learned I was pregnant. I’m not sure if it’s due to that or my hormones that I’m bleeding so long, because I have a past of constant bleeding, but I never experienced this with my first pregnancy.
    My doctor said I should go in for a scan in a few days and gave me some antibiotics in the mean time but I cannot help but stress, everyday I’m wearing a panty liner and it fills up, I sometimes pee a bit of blood, and that’s super alarming.


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