I am leaking fluid

When To Call Your MidwifeA slight increase in discharge/fluid during pregnancy is normal, especially when the weather is hot. You may find that it is a mild-smelling, milky fluid, which is fine.

Any other discharge/fluid needs to be checked out by a midwife or doctor. Look out for the following:
• Any sign of blood, which may be red (like if you cut your finger) or dark brown (if it is old blood). This is not normal and if it happens, you should contact your midwife.
• Discharge that is green/brown or yellow in color is itchy and/or has an offensive smell. This may be a sign of infection so you should contact your midwife.
• Leaking or gushing clear or pinkish liquid from your vagina before 37 weeks. This may mean that your waters have broken early (preterm prelabour rupture of membranes – PPROM). Once your waters have broken, the baby has less protection against infection. There’s also a possibility that you may need to prepare for a premature birth. Contact your midwife.
Leaking or gushing of clear or pinkish fluid after 37 weeks may mean that your waters have broken and that you may be about to go into labour. You should note down the time your waters broke, color, smell, amount and if baby is moving after your water broke. Call your midwife right away and provide this information.
If your waters are green or brown (or if there is blood) you need to be checked urgently, so call the maternity unit immediately.
Read more about premature birth.
Read more about waters breaking early (PPROM).
Read more about waters breaking after 37 weeks.


Sources
Macdonald S, Magill-Cuerden J, Mayes’ midwifery, thirteenth edition, Edinburgh, Bailliere Tindall Elsevier, 2012

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