Postpartum Complications

Overview of Postpartum Complications

Postpartum Complications Meaning in Urdu

خواتین میں بچے کی پیدائش کے بعد کچھ طبی مسائل ظاہر ہوتے ہیں، یہ طبی مسائل بعض اوقات معمولی ہوتے ہیں تو کئی مرتبہ ان کی وجہ سے خواتین موت کا شکار بھی ہو جاتی ہیں۔ بچے کی پیدائش کے بعد کچھ خواتین کے اعضائے مخصوصہ سے بہت زیادہ خون بہتا ہے، پیشاب کی نالی کا انفیکشن لاحق ہو جاتا ہے، بلڈ کلاٹس بن جاتے ہیں، جب کہ ان کو ہائی بلڈ پریشر اور ڈپریشن بھی لاحق ہو سکتے ہیں۔ بچے کے قدرتی طریقے سے پیدا نہ ہونے، ذیابیطس، موٹاپے، اور مدافعتی نظام کی بیماریوں کی وجہ سے حمل کے بعد لاحق ہونے والے طبی مسائل کے خطرات بڑھ جاتے ہیں۔


Postpartum complications are health issues that can occur in women after giving birth. These complications can range from minor issues to severe, life-threatening conditions.

Prevalence of Postpartum Complications

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 10% of women worldwide experience complications during childbirth, and approximately 830 women die every day from preventable causes related to pregnancy and childbirth

Signs and Symptoms of Postpartum Complications

Postpartum complications symptoms can vary depending on the type and severity of the complication. Some common symptoms to watch out for include:

  • Heavy bleeding that soaks through a pad in an hour or less or blood clots larger than a golf ball
  • Fever or chills
  • Severe pain in the abdomen, pelvis, or perineum
  • Difficulty urinating or pain while urinating
  • Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
  • Breast tenderness, swelling, or redness
  • Nipple pain, cracking, or bleeding while breastfeeding
  • Difficulty breathing, chest pain, or coughing up blood
  • Headache, vision changes, or confusion
  • Persistent sadness, anxiety, or irritability
  • Swelling, redness, or pain in the legs
  • High blood pressure

It's essential to seek medical attention if you experience these symptoms after giving birth. Prompt diagnosis and treatment can prevent complications from becoming more severe or life-threatening.


Types of Postpartum Complications

Some common postpartum complications include:

  • Postpartum hemorrhage: Heavy bleeding after delivery, usually defined as blood loss of more than 500 ml in vaginal delivery and 1000 ml in cesarean delivery.
  • Infections: Women are at increased risk of developing conditions after childbirth, such as endometritis, urinary tract infections (UTIs), and wound infections.
  • Perineal tears: Tears in the skin between the vagina and anus can occur during delivery, particularly in cases of vaginal birth.
  • Postpartum depression: A severe mood disorder that affects some women after childbirth, characterized by feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and fatigue.
  • Breastfeeding difficulties: Some women may experience problems with breastfeeding, including low milk supply, sore nipples, and engorgement.
  • Blood clots: Blood clots can form in the legs, pelvis, or lungs after childbirth, particularly in women who have had a cesarean section.
  • Hypertensive disorders: Preeclampsia, eclampsia, and gestational hypertension can develop in pregnancy and lead to postpartum complications.

Women should receive adequate postpartum care and follow-up to ensure early identification and management of potential complications.


Causes of Postpartum Complications

Postpartum complications can have various causes, including:

  • Physical trauma during childbirth, such as tears or hemorrhage
  • Infections that can occur during delivery, such as chorioamnionitis, a placental and amniotic fluid infection, or group B streptococcus (GBS) infection
  • Pre-existing medical conditions, such as diabetes or hypertension, can be exacerbated by pregnancy and childbirth
  • Cesarean section delivery can increase the risk of infection, bleeding, and blood clots.
  • Psychological and emotional stressors associated with childbirth, such as postpartum depression or anxiety
  • Lack of social support or inadequate access to healthcare
  • Late or inadequate postpartum care and follow-up

It is important to note that not all postpartum complications prevention is difficult. However, many complications can be identified and treated early through regular postpartum care and follow-up with a healthcare provider.



Risk Factors of Postpartum Complications

Several risk factors can increase a woman's likelihood of experiencing postpartum complications, including:

  • Cesarean delivery: Women who undergo a cesarean delivery have a higher risk of postpartum complications, such as infection, bleeding, and blood clots.
  • Preeclampsia or other hypertensive disorders of pregnancy: Women who develop high blood pressure during pregnancy are at increased risk of developing postpartum hypertension or other complications.
  • Multiple pregnancies: Women who carry more than one baby are at higher risk of experiencing postpartum hemorrhage, preterm delivery, and other complications.
  • Obesity: Women who are obese before or during pregnancy are at increased risk of developing postpartum complications, such as infections, blood clots, and hypertension.
  • Diabetes: Women with pre-existing diabetes or gestational diabetes have a higher risk of developing postpartum infections, wound complications, and other complications.
  • Pre-existing medical conditions: Women with pre-existing medical conditions, such as heart disease or autoimmune disorders, may be at increased risk of postpartum complications.
  • Previous history of postpartum complications: Women who have experienced postpartum complications in previous pregnancies are at higher risk of developing them again.
  • Lack of social support: Women who lack social support or live in disadvantaged communities may have limited access to healthcare and may be at increased risk of postpartum complications.

Gynecologists should identify women at higher risk of postpartum complications and provide them with appropriate care and support.


Postpartum complications can vary depending on the type and severity. Some common complications of postpartum complications include:

  • Hemorrhagic shock: Severe bleeding can lead to a drop in blood pressure and inadequate blood flow to the body's organs, which can be life-threatening.
  • Septic shock: If an infection is left untreated, it can spread throughout the body and cause sepsis, a life-threatening condition that can lead to organ failure.
  • Blood clots: Blood clots can form in the legs, pelvis, or lungs after childbirth, which can cause pain, swelling, and breathing difficulties.
  • Organ damage: If blood loss is severe or prolonged, it can lead to damage to the kidneys, liver, or other organs.
  • Postpartum depression: A severe mood disorder that affects some women after childbirth, characterized by feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and fatigue.
  • Breastfeeding difficulties: Prolonged or severe breastfeeding difficulties can lead to mastitis, abscesses, or early cessation of breastfeeding.
  • Delayed recovery: Postpartum complications can delay recovery and make it more difficult for women to care for themselves and their newborns.

Women need to receive prompt and appropriate care for postpartum complications to prevent these potential complications from occurring.



While postpartum complications prevention is difficult, there are some steps women can take to reduce their risk of experiencing them. Here are some preventive measures:

  • Attend all recommended prenatal appointments: Regular prenatal care can help identify and manage pre-existing medical conditions that could increase the risk of postpartum complications.
  • Stay healthy during pregnancy: Eating a healthy diet, staying active, and getting enough rest during pregnancy can help reduce the risk of complications.
  • Plan for a safe delivery: Discuss delivery options and potential risks with your gynecologist. Safe delivery with minimal intervention is usually preferred, when possible.
  • Take steps to reduce the risk of infection: Proper hand hygiene, good perineal hygiene, and avoiding unnecessary medical interventions can help reduce the risk of infections.
  • Get early and regular postpartum care: Women should attend postpartum appointments recommended by gynecologists, even if they feel fine. It will help identify and treat any potential complications early.
  • Seek help if experiencing mental health issues: Women experiencing postpartum depression or anxiety should seek help from their healthcare provider.
  • Get support from family and friends: Having a support system in place can help reduce stress and improve overall health and well-being.




Postpartum complications diagnosis is made through a combination of physical exams, laboratory tests, and imaging studies. Here are some diagnostic procedures used to diagnose postpartum complications:

  • Physical exam: Your healthcare provider will perform a physical exam to evaluate your vital signs, check for signs of infection or bleeding, and assess the healing of any incisions.
  • Blood tests: Blood tests can check for anemia, infection, and other conditions that could contribute to postpartum complications.
  • Imaging studies: Imaging studies, such as ultrasounds or X-rays, may evaluate potential complications, such as blood clots or infections.
  • Urine tests: Urine tests may check for signs of infection or kidney damage.
  • Breast exam: Women experiencing breastfeeding difficulties or breast pain may undergo a breast exam to check for signs of mastitis or abscesses.
  • Mental health evaluation: Women experiencing symptoms of postpartum depression or anxiety may undergo a mental health evaluation.


Treatment of Postpartum Complications | When to Consult a Doctor

The treatment for postpartum complications depends on the type and severity. Here are some common treatments for postpartum complications:

  • Medications: Depending on the type of complication, medications may be prescribed, such as antibiotics, pain relievers, and medications to control bleeding.
  • Blood transfusions: In severe cases of bleeding, a blood transfusion may be necessary to replace the lost blood.
  • Surgery: In some cases, surgical intervention may be necessary to treat complications such as a uterine rupture, a retained placenta, or a hematoma.
  • Supportive care: Supportive care such as hydration, pain management, and wound care may be necessary for complications such as infection or perineal tears.
  • Psychiatric treatment: Women experiencing postpartum depression or anxiety may benefit from therapy, medication, or other types of psychiatric treatment.
  • Breastfeeding support: Women experiencing breastfeeding difficulties may benefit from lactation counseling and in some cases, medication to reduce inflammation and pain.

Women need to receive prompt and appropriate treatment for postpartum complications to reduce the risk of further complications and to help ensure a full recovery. Women should work closely with their gynecologists to develop a treatment plan appropriate for their situation.