After being admitted over the weekend, Chrissy Teigen updated fans from her hospital bed Monday explaining that she had been experiencing bleeding and complications from her “weak placenta” during her high-risk pregnancy. On Tuesday, Teigen tweeted that she’d had a “really scary morning” — dealing with a larger blood clot and concerns for her fetus’ health.
“Just had a really scary morning,” Teigen tweeted. “huge clot, almost save-worthy. The scramble to hear the heartbeat seemed like hours. I never thought I’d relief sigh so much in my liiiiife. [sic]”
Just had a really scary morning 😩 huge clot, almost save-worthy. The scramble to hear the heartbeat seemed like hours. I never thought I’d relief sigh so much in my liiiiife
Teigen’s transparency about her day-to-day life is just a part of why her fans connect with her so much. Since opening up about her time on bed rest, she’s shared a lot of vulnerable, personal moments — with the one very reasonable request that people keep their speculation, unsolicited advice and diagnoses to themselves.
We don’t know Teigen’s particular health story (and aren’t going to speculate about her specifically — because we aren’t her doctors). But here’s what we know about bleeding during pregnancy and experiencing “huge clots” later on in your pregnancy — and how it can help you (or the pregnant people in your life) feel a little more informed and less scared. (Remember to always, always reach out to your doctors/pregnancy healthcare team if you’re nervous or need to understand what’s happening to your body!)
“Common problems that may cause light bleeding later in pregnancy include inflammation of or growths on the cervix. Heavy bleeding is a more serious sign. Heavy bleeding may be caused by a problem with the placenta,” according to the American College of Gynecologists and Obstetricians (ACOG). “Any amount of bleeding also may signal preterm labor. If you have any bleeding late in pregnancy, contact your ob-gyn right away or go immediately to the hospital.”
ACOG notes that the following placenta issues later in a pregnancy can also be the cause of bleeding:
- Placental abruption — where “the placenta detaches from the wall of the uterus before or during birth. The most common signs and symptoms are vaginal bleeding and abdominal or back pain. Placental abruption can cause serious complications if it is not found early. The fetus may not get enough oxygen, and the pregnant woman can lose a large amount of blood.”
- Placenta previa — in which “the placenta lies low in the uterus, it may partly or completely cover the cervix. This is called placenta previa. It may cause vaginal bleeding. This type of bleeding often occurs without pain. Some types of placenta previa resolve on their own by 32–35 weeks of pregnancy as the lower part of the uterus stretches and thins out. Labor and delivery then can happen normally. If placenta previa does not resolve, you may need to have the baby early by cesarean delivery.”
- Placenta accreta — which is when “the placenta (or part of the placenta) invades and is inseparable from the uterine wall… Placenta accreta can cause bleeding during the third trimester and severe blood loss during delivery. Most cases can be found during pregnancy with a routine ultrasound exam. Sometimes, though, it is not discovered until after the baby is born. If you have placenta accreta, you are at risk of life-threatening blood loss during delivery. Your OB-GYN will plan your delivery carefully and make sure that all needed resources are available. You may need to have your baby at a hospital that specializes in this complication. Hysterectomy often needs to be done right after delivery to prevent life-threatening blood loss.”
Experiencing bleeding during pregnancy is extremely scary! First and foremost, if you or someone you know is experiencing any kind of bleeding that feels off while pregnant, you should absolutely get in touch with your OB-GYN and members of your healthcare team.
Pregnant and on bed rest? Here’s our survival kit for staying sane and comfortable when you can’t leave bed: