Every third woman has an implantation bleeding in the first two weeks of pregnancy, which is caused by the adhesion of the embryo to the uterine wall. If identified correctly, this bleeding can be a very good news, but also a real shock, because this implantation bleeding can easily be confused with a menstruation.
As you might know, June is the month of infertility and in today’s article IVF-Spain Madrid would like to contribute to dispel the important doubts on this subject and liberate people who who wish to have a baby from unnecessary worries.
First of all, you must know that during a pregnancy woman´s uterus is well supplied with blood, which is necesarry for embryo´s correct development. During the implantation of the embryo to the lining of the uterus, some blood vessels might get ruptured, which leads to slight vaginal bleeding. Nevertheless, every woman and every pregnancy is different and since this bleeding can quickly be confused with a menstrual bleeding, it is advisable to be cautious.
At what point of the cycle does implantation bleeding occur?
The egg and sperm meet in one of the fallopian tubes where fertilisation occurs. The fertilised egg then moves slowly towards the uterus. On its way to the uterus, the fertilised egg divides continuously and achives the uterus around 5-6 days after the fertilisation. At this point we do not speak about a fertilized egg anymore, but about an embryo in a blastocyst stage.
During a fertility treatment, the embryos develop during first 5-6 days in a lab and are then transferred to a woman´s uterus. In both cases, the embryo get to the uterus in the best moment to attach to uterus´lining and lead to a pregancy.
This process takes about ten to fourteen days after conception, so this small bleeding can be confused with the beginning of a menstrual period.
How do I distinguish between implantation bleeding and menstruation?
As we have already mentioned, it is normal to confuse implantation bleeding with the beginning of the next period, as both bleedings occur at the same time of the cycle, only that one of the bleedings marks the beginning of a pregnancy and the other the opposite.
Nevertheless, there are factors that make a correct identification of an implantation bleeding possible like the extent of the bleeding its colour and texture.
Thus the amount of an implantation bleed is less than a menstrual bleeding, usually only a few drops or light spotting, which, contrary to menstrual bleeding, declines over the days.
A further factor is the colour of the blood, because an implantation bleeding is very dark contrary to a normally light red menstrual bleeding.
Compared to menstruation, the duration of implantation bleeding is shorter and, unlike menstrual bleeding, lasts only a few hours to a maximum of three days. Another key factor is the texture of the bleeding, which tends to be more fluid and lighter than during a menstrual bleed.
Nevertheless, as every woman is unique, it is advisable to look for other symptoms typical for the first weeks of a pregnancy, such as breast sensitivity, nausea, fatigue or a frequent urge to urinate.
How do I know that I´m pregnant?
The easiest way is to do a urine pregnancy test. The disadvantage is that it can be too early to get a reliable result. If you do an urine test too early, you may get a false negative or positive result. For this reason, if your period didn´t start, you should wait a little longer before carrying out the test.
The hormone hCG, also known as beta-hCG, is produced by the embryo when it implants in the uterus. The measuring of beta-hCG levels is a reliable indicator of whether a pregnancy has been achieved.
Fertility clinics such as IVF-Spain Madrid, the level of hCG hormone is measured by taking a blood test ten days after the embryo transfer. The continuous increase of this hormone in the first trimester of pregnancy is an important indication that the pregnancy is going well.
This time span between finishing a fertility treatment and receiving pregnancy test´s results, is a difficult time for our patients, as they cannot do anything else but to wait.
What should I do if I have a bleeding?
If you have undergone a fertility treatment, it is extremely important that you continue to take all your medication as usual and contact our patient care team so that one of our fertility experts can correctly evaluate the situation and give you appropriate instructions.
If you have not undergone any treatment, you should immediately consult your gynaecologist so that he or she can determine what type of bleeding you have.
In case you still have questions you can fill out this form to get in contact with our team, which is happy to help you.