Should I Be Concerned about Vaginal Discharge in Early Pregnancy?

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  • Written By: Tricia Ellis-Christensen
  • Edited By: Jessica Seminara
  • Last Modified Date: 23 July 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Vaginal discharge in early pregnancy is often a healthy sign and one of the common indicators that a woman is pregnant. During pregnancy, the body provides this extra white-colored mucus, called leukorrhea, and it is not a health concern. Another normal type of discharge within the first two months is brown in color, and it usually represents a small amount of spotting, which doesn’t require attention unless bleeding begins. In contrast, some types of vaginal discharge in early pregnancy may signify fungal or bacterial infections or the presence of a sexually transmitted disease (STD). These types of concerns, and anything that a woman may be worried about, should be brought to a medical professional's attention.

Milky white discharge in early pregnancy is simply a normal bodily function when extra estrogen is present and the fetus implants. One purpose of this type of mucus is to help essentially plug the cervix to protect the womb. Increased cervical secretions help accomplish this task, creating a mucus plug which remains in place until shortly before labor.

Leukorrhea is actually the first sign most women have that they are pregnant. Ordinarily, as menstruation nears, cervical secretions thin and diminish. When a woman is pregnant, however, these secretions may increase. Women who are cognizant of their cervical mucus may actually be able to detect whether they are pregnant earlier than other indicators like a missed period.

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A brown-colored mucus in the first trimester is also relatively common. This is often caused by a tiny bit of spotting (very light vaginal bleeding) that mixes with the mucus. Generally, the appearance of this type of discharge is not medically concerning, unless it’s accompanied by sudden pain in the back or uterus, or it is followed by significant bleeding.

Leukorrhea and brown-colored mucus excluded, some kinds of vaginal discharge in the first trimester are concerning and should be addressed with medical attention. Discharge that is gray, green, or yellow, especially if it is accompanied by foul smells, itching, or burning sensations during urination should be looked at by a doctor. Though these are not necessarily concerning signs — a yeast infection can also cause some of these symptoms — a medical professional's advice may prove helpful.

Bacterial infections, which also produce discharge, may develop in the first few months of pregnancy. In addition, sexually transmitted diseases, like trichomoniasis, may appear shortly after becoming pregnant. Treating these infections in early stages is important to promote comfort and to continue to provide a healthy environment for the baby.

Milky white flow that becomes completely transparent and is rather watery might be amniotic fluid. This is uncommon in the first trimester, but a patient who experiences this symptom should seek medical help right away.

Some women are unprepared for the extent of increased discharge in the early months of pregnancy. Sanitary napkins or panty liners are a good way to get a little more protection. Tampons are not advised because they may create infections.

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Discuss this Article

anon359381
Post 3

A few days ago I started spotting a week before my period. Now I have white mucus. Help.

Celthyte
Post 2

Vaginal discharge during pregnancy is healthy and normal, though of course it's also normal to wonder about every little thing that is going on with your body during this special and exciting time.

cclinton
Post 1

From the moment I was trying to get pregnant, and constantly looking for signs of pregnancy, to my early pregnancy vaginal discharge, which I focused on to make sure everything was going ok, I found myself thinking about this a lot. My doctor told me that basically, as long as I'm not bleeding heavily, any discharge is pretty normal and not a concern.

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