Postpartum infection

Postpartum infection
Postpartum infection

Your body goes through a lot during pregnancy and labor, if you though that delivering the baby will spare you from all discomforts you, sorry to burst your bubble but your body will take time to heal itself. Taking care of your body and giving it importance is necessary as your body is prone to infections Here is everything you should know about postpartum infection and take precaustions.

What is Postpartum Infection?

The term postpartum infection is used to refer to different types of infections that happen after a vaginal or a cesarean birth or during the stages of breastfeeding. While it is normal to experience some amount of bleeding or fatigue after birth, there are certain conditions that actually require a more detailed medical examination and cure.

Your body is prone to infections due to the wounds in your uterus and there are various lacerations around your vagina and cervix.  If you’ve had a cesarean delivery, the wound remains fresh for quite some time. A postpartum infection is more common in women who have had a cesarean delivery or had a premature membrane rupture.

Symptoms of Postpartum Infection

Once you are discharged from the hospital, your body has not quite recovered itself. Postpartum infection may start after you go home. As postpartum infections can be of various types, the symptoms mostly depend on the specific condition.  Here are some symptoms of postpartum infection:

  • Fever
  • Foul-Smelling discharge from the vagina
  • Foul-Smelling discharge from your cesarean wound
  • Pain and tenderness in the infected area
  • Excessive bleeding
  • Postpartum depression
  • Difficulty in having sex even after the doctor’s approval
  • Excessive hair loss
  • Problems in passing urine or stool

You could experience either all or some of these, individually or in combination, in case of an infection. If you notice these symptoms and discomfort it is advised to not wait and go get it checked immediately as if you wait any longer the infection can get more complicated.

Types of Postpartum Infection:

Postpartum Hemorrhage

If you are bleeding extensively after delivery it is due to postpartum hemorrage. This happens in cases if you had a long stressful labor. A postpartum hemorrhage usually happens when the uterus is not able to contract properly after the placenta has been delivered.

Uterine Infection

During the delivery of the baby, the placenta separates from the uterine wall and is pushed out of the vagina within 20 minutes after the birth. Sometimes though, pieces of the placenta remain in the uterus, leading to infection. Symptoms of uterine infection include a foul-smelling discharge, swollen and tender uterus, high fever or very high white blood cell count.

Cesarean wound infection

Watch your body closely for any signs of infection, like redness, swollen skin or pus discharge as your body can develop an infection on the C-Section wound after a few days of delivery.

Perineal Pain

The area between the rectum and vagina is the perineum. Pain in this area is a common occurrence if you have had a vaginal birth. There is a chance of it getting stretches is high during delivery. You will experience a feeling of swelling or soreness in this area.

Heavy discharge

You will experience heavy vaginal discharge for the first few weeks after birth. This is usually the blood and the remains of the placenta that is coming out. The discharge at first will be red with clots, it will later turn to pink and then white or yellowish, finally stopping altogether. In case you do not notice a reduction in the flow or the color is still dark and smells foul, talk to your doctor immediately.


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