Preterm prelabour rupture of membranes (PPROM) is once your waters break before 37 weeks of pregnancy. If this happens, girlfriend will require to get medical assist straight away.

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This web page covers waters break early prior to 37 weeks. Read an ext about what to expect when your waters break after 37 weeks.

What is preterm prelabour rupture of membrane (PPROM)?

Your baby develops inside a bag of fluid referred to as the amniotic sac. When your baby is prepared to be born, the sac breaks and the fluid comes out through your vagina. This is her waters breaking. The is likewise known as rupture the the membranes.

Normally her waters break shortly before or throughout labour. If her waters break before labour at less than 37 weeks the pregnancy, this is recognized as preterm prelabour rupture of membranes or PPROM. If this happens, it have the right to (but does not always) create early labour.

If her waters break early, the risks and treatment depend on your stage of pregnancy.

Is PPROM common in pregnancy?

PPROM wake up in about 3% that pregnancies.

What causes PPROM?

We don’t always know why PPROM happens. But it might be brought about by infection, or placental problems, such together placental insufficiency or a blood gerean (haematoma) behind the placenta or membranes. Other risk factors may incorporate if you:

have had any type of direct trauma come the stomachhave had actually cervical surgical treatment or have a brief cervixhave extra fluid around the baby in the amniotic sac (polyhydramnios)

It is crucial to remember that PPROM is not caused by anything you did or didn’t do in pregnancy.

How will certainly I understand if mine waters have actually broken?

Your waters breaking may feel choose a mild popping sensation, adhered to by a trickle or gush of fluid that you can’t stop, unlike as soon as you wee. The lot of liquid you shed may vary. You might not have any sensation of the yes, really ‘breaking’, and also then the only sign that your waters have damaged is the trickle that fluid. It no hurt once your waters break.

You have the right to read much more about what come expect when your waters break.

What should I carry out if my waters break early?

If girlfriend think your waters may have actually broken, friend should call your midwife or work ward and go to the hospital because that a check-up straight away.

Amniotic fluid is clear and a pale straw colour. It might be a small pinkish if it consists of some blood, or it may be clear. You need to tell your healthcare expert if:

the waters room smelly or colouredyou are shedding blood.

This might mean that you and also your baby require urgent attention.

If you think the you space leaking liquid from the vagina, undertake a pad no a tampon for this reason your doctor or midwife can examine the amount and also colour of her waters.

“I had cervical incompetence and PPROM. I was put on hospital bedrest, antibiotics and also had continuous scans top top the continuing to be water levels. Despite the antibiotics my infection markers were gaining worse and also I had actually to it is in induced in ~ 24 weeks because they didn"t think my infant would survive much longer in one infected womb. He endured birth, invested 7 months in hospital and also then come home. He"s now practically 5 years old and starting school in September.”


What wake up at the hospital?

When you come at hospital, her healthcare expert will assess you to see if her waters have broken. This will likewise include a check on your basic health including your temperature, pulse and blood pressure. They will likewise check your baby’s heartbeat and may carry out a urine test to check for infection.

Your healthcare expert will talk to you around what has actually happened, exactly how you space feeling and your pregnant history.

How is PPROM diagnosed?

Your healthcare expert will likely ask to carry out an interior vaginal check (they will certainly ask for your permission prior to doing so).

You may have actually what’s referred to as a speculum examination. This is when a little instrument extended in gel is inserted into the vagina. The healthcare skilled will then be able to see if over there is any kind of fluid pooling in the vagina. Castle will likewise take a swab to test for infection and a swab to check for team B strep infection. This will help confirm if your waters have broken. This check isn’t painful however it can sometimes it is in uncomfortable.

If it isn’t clear from the speculum examination, they may do a swab check of the fluid. Castle may also do one ultrasound scan to calculation the lot of fluid around your baby.

What wake up next?

If her waters have broken, girlfriend will usually be recommend to remain in hospital wherein you and your baby will be carefully monitored for signs of infection. This may be because that a few days or possibly longer. You will have your temperature, blood pressure and pulse take away regularly, and blood test to check for infection. Your baby’s heart price will likewise be monitored regularly.

If your waters have actually not broken, girlfriend should have the ability to go home.

If only a very tiny amount the amniotic liquid is leaking, that is not always feasible to view it during an examination and it have the right to be daunting to check whether your waters have broken.

If you continue to leak fluid at home, you have to return to the hospital because that a more check-up.

What can PPROM mean for me and also for mine baby?

If her waters have damaged early, your healthcare professional will comment on with girlfriend the possible outcomes for your baby. This will depend on how numerous weeks pregnant you are as soon as this happens and your separation, personal, instance circumstances. 


The membranes kind a protective barrier roughly the baby. After the membrane break, there is a risk that girlfriend may develop an infection. This can reason you to go into labour at an early stage or cause you or your baby to develop sepsis (a life-threatening reaction come an infection).

The symptom of epidemic include:

an unusual vaginal discharge with an uncomfortable smella rapid pulse rate

Your baby’s heart price may also be faster than normal. If there are indicators that you have an infection, your baby may need to be born straight away. This is to shot to avoid both you and your baby becoming much more unwell. 

PPROM and premature birth

About 50% of women v PPROM will get in labour in ~ 1 mainly after your waters break. The more along you are in her pregnancy, the an ext likely you space to enter labour in ~ 1 week of her waters breaking. PPROM is associated with 3-4 the end of every 10 premature birth births.

Babies born prematurely have actually an boosted risk of health problems and also may should spend time a neonatal unit. Uncover out an ext about premature birth.

Cord prolapse

This is as soon as the umbilical cord drops through her cervix right into the vagina. This is an emergency complication and can be life-threatening for your baby, however it is uncommon.

Pulmonary hypoplasia

This is as soon as your baby’s lungs fail to develop normally since of a lack of fluid approximately them. The is an ext common if her waters break an extremely early top top in pregnancy (less 보다 24 weeks) once your baby’s lungs are still developing.

Placental abruption

This as soon as your placenta off prematurely from her uterus. It can reason heavy bleeding and can be dangerous because that both you and also your baby. Uncover out much more about placental abruption.

If you suffer PPROM, occasionally your infant sadly might not survive. Over there is a higher risk that this continue if your waters break very early, if the infant is born very prematurely (under 24 weeks) or, in some cases, complying with infection or cord prolapse.

Are there any treatments because that PPROM?

It is not feasible to ‘fix’ or cure the membranes when they space broken. However you may be readily available treatment to alleviate the dangers to her baby. This can include:

a brief course that antibiotics to minimize the risk of an infection and delay laboura course of steroid injections (corticosteroids) to help with her baby’s breakthrough and to reduce the opportunity of troubles caused by gift born prematurely

If friend do enter premature labour, you may be available intravenous antibiotics (where the antibiotics are provided through a needle straight right into a vein) to minimize the threat of early-onset group B strep infection.

Do I need to stay in hospital?

You will commonly be recommend to remain in hospital because that 5 to 7 job after your waters break, to screen your and also your baby’s wellbeing. You may be allowed to go home after that if you room not thought about at threat for providing birth early.

When have to I seek help if ns go home?

Contact your healthcare professional and return to the hospital automatically if you experience any kind of of the following:

raised temperatureflu-like symptom (feeling hot and also shivery)if the leaking fluid becomes greenish or smellycontractions or cramping painabdominal pains or ago pain

You have to be given clear advice on exactly how to take your pulse and temperature in ~ home. You’ll probably likewise be advised to avoid having actually sex during this time.

What follow-up should I have?

You should have continuous check-ups v your healthcare skilled (usually as soon as or double a week).

During these check-ups, your baby’s heart price will it is in monitored, her temperature, pulse and blood press will be checked and you will have actually blood tests to look for indications of infection. Your doctor will job-related with girlfriend to do an ongoing arrangement for her pregnancy, including constant ultrasound scans to check on your baby’s growth.

Your mental health

Experiencing PPROM can be stressful and also cause a the majority of anxiety. Coping with brand-new symptoms and also complications in pregnancy have the right to sometimes be overwhelming. You could shot our optimal 10 tips to relax.

If you’re emotion low, speak to your partner, family members or friends around how you space feeling. Girlfriend can likewise talk to your midwife. You won’t be judged for exactly how you feel. Castle will help you stay well for this reason you can look after ~ yourself and your baby. They may additionally be able to signpost friend to an ext help and also support if you need it.

When is the ideal time to offer birth?

If you and your baby space both well through no indications of infection, you may be recommend to wait until 37 weeks to provide birth. This is because it deserve to reduce the risks linked with being born prematurely.

If you are carrying the GBS bacteria, then you might be recommend to give birth native 34 weeks since of the danger of GBS infection for your baby.

Your healthcare experienced will talk to you around what castle think is best and ask friend what you desire to do. Nothing be fear to questioning as countless questions as you need to in bespeak to feeling comfortable and also able to make notified decisions around your care.

Will I have the ability to have a vaginal birth after PPROM?

This is possible, however it relies on when you enter labour, the place your infant is lying, and also your very own individual circumstances and choices.

Your healthcare expert will talk about this with you. 

Will I have actually PPROM again a future pregnancy?

Possibly. Having PPROM or offering birth prematurely means that you room at an enhanced risk of having a preterm birth in any kind of future pregnancies, yet it doesn’t median that you certainly will.

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You will certainly probably have specialist treatment in your following pregnancy. If you are not available specialist care, you deserve to ask for it. Remember the you can always talk to her midwife if you have any concerns around your care.