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Pregnancy Bliss | Reproductive Health Hub

Contact Answers In the News Hot Topics

Pain during sex

Question: What is the cause of pain during sex? Every time we have sex with my boyfriend I get this stabbing pain inside that he has to stop. We have tried different positions but it keeps happening. Now, I don’t feel like I should bother. What could it be? M.A (UK)

Answer: There are many potential causes of painful intercourse. With such few details about you it will be careless for me to try to give you an answer specific to your situation. It is, however, obvious that you will need to be seen by your doctor for an examination. He/she will want to know how long this has been going on, whether this never used to happen in the past, whether there has been a change of partner, whether you get pain at other times such as during your periods or on opening bowels and a few other facts. That allows the doctor to form a picture and narrow down the potential causes. However, even before you do that, do have a read on our section on ‘Painful sexual intercourse’ which may shed more light on what might be going on with you.

Is this an early miscarriage?

Question: My previous menstruation cycle started on July 3rd. For the past 3 months I am having 22 day cycle. In third week of July I started feeling very weak and tired. On 30th of July I had vaginal spotting (instead of period). So I thought I may be pregnant. I was waiting for 1 week of missed period so that I can take up the pregnancy test and get confirmed. But on Aug 5th I started bleeding and it is like a normal period. My concern and confusion is whether i had miscarriage in 3 weeks of pregnancy? D. (Singapore)

Answer: It is difficult to say but my hunch says you probably haven’t been pregnant. You said your cycle has been 22 days over the last three months which to me implies that your ‘normal’ cycle is usually longer. 28 days possibly? Now, the last cycle was clearly longer than 22 days but you certainly started spotting on Day 28 (July 30th). You have not said whether this spotting continued until the onset of the proper bleed. You have also said the bleed that started on the 5th was “like a normal period” meaning, it was not unusually heavy. All these factors make me think it is just likely that you have resumed your normal pattern, assuming you have always had 4 week cycles. There is really nothing here that would make me think this is an early miscarriage.

Placental position and normal delivery

Question:  What is the normal position of placenta for normal delivery? V. (India)

Answer: As long as the placenta is not low, that is encroaching onto or covering the cervix, its position does not interfere with delivery. It, therefore, does not matter whether it is to the front (anterior), the back (posterior) or at the top (fundal) or in between any of these location, the normal process of labour and delivery will not be interfered with. An abnormally low lying placenta is what is known as placenta praevia

Genital herpes in pregnancy

Question: Will herpes affect my baby. I am 23 weeks pregnant and these painful sores which the hospital says are herpes. They have not given me any medicine. Thanks. D.L. (UK)

Answer: You have not said whether this is the first time you have had these herpes lesions or it is a flare up of an old problem. I am also assuming these are genital lesions rather than oral. The one common theme in all cases of genital herpes is that if you have active lesions when you are going into labour, whether they are new or recurrent, you will have to have a caesarean section. If you have had genital herpes in the past and you are just having flare ups, even lesions within the last 6 weeks will not preclude vaginal delivery. For a new case things are different as risk to the baby is greater and therefore if you have had lesions in the final weeks of pregnancy, evegenital herpesn if healed to the naked eye, it is advised that you avoid vaginal delivery. There is more information on this subject here.

Persistent SPD  months after delivery

Question:  I have had spd from about 35 weeks pregnant and could hardly walk. My baby is now 6 months old and I can still hardly walk anywhere without being in a lot of pain. Will this ever go away? L.B. (UK)

Answer: It is probably safe for me to say, yes; the symptoms will eventually go away. However, the one question that I cannot answer is ‘when’.  You see, whilst the majority of women with symphysis pubis dysfunction (SPD) see these symptoms resolving quite quickly after delivery, unfortunately there is a minority of women who continue to suffer significant pain and limited mobility for months afterwards. It is estimated that about 1 in 14 sufferers will still have some symptoms at 6 months. Some women have reported lingering symptoms at 2 years but this is admittedly quite unusual.

What’s also important is to ensure that the problem has not been misdiagnosed. There is another condition called osteitis pubis which presents with fairly similar symptoms. In osteitis pubis the pain is concentrated in the joint at the front and not other joints in the pelvis. Osteitis pubis is an inflammatory condition rather than a problem of joint laxity. Its treatment is therefore different. If you have any doubts about your diagnosis, it may be worthwhile for your doctor to have another look at you. I hope you get better soon.

Air travel in early pregnancy

Question:  How soon can i fly?  I am 12 weeks pregnant and need to fly in three weeks. Is this safe? D.C. (Spain)

Answer: It is safe for you to fly now and for the next several weeks. As you may have read on our main section on the subject of flying during pregnancy, there is really no health restriction on this at any stage of the pregnancy. The restriction put on by airlines in the later phase of pregnancy is primarily to avoid having to deal with unexpected pre-term labour and possible delivery mid-air where the appropriate help for mother and baby may not be available.

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