Oligohydramnios – Formation Of Too Little Amniotic Fluid

If the amniotic sac contains too little amniotic fluid, this is called oligohydramnios. Too little amniotic fluid is possible at any stage of pregnancy. A lack of amniotic fluid should be treated to avert possible dangers for the child. Here you can find out everything about the causes and possible treatments.

What Is An Oligohydramnios?

If the amniotic sac contains too little amniotic fluid (less than 500 ml) before birth, this is called an oligohydramnios. The opposite of oligohydramnios is polyhydramnios. In this case, too much amniotic fluid is formed. Both too much amniotic fluid (polyhydramnios) and too little amniotic fluid (oligohydramnios) can be harmful to the baby.

For the unborn child, an adequate amount of amniotic fluid is very important. If the amount of amniotic fluid is reduced, the function of the lungs is not sufficiently stimulated. Since the baby can hardly move, bone deformities may also occur. If the amount of amniotic fluid is already limiting at the beginning of pregnancy, this can lead to the formation of adhesion cords. In rare cases, these can lead to mild – sometimes severe – malformations, especially of the limbs.

The insufficient amount of amniotic fluid means that the uterus is too small for the particular week of pregnancy. The pregnant woman also feels fewer fetal movements.

What Causes Oligohydramnios?

Too little amniotic fluid can have several causes. Possible causes are:

  • Dysfunction of the placenta, for example, due to high blood pressure or smoking.
  • Disease of the fetal kidneys and urinary tract.
  • High blood pressure in the mother or in the child.
  • Premature rupture of the membranes with loss of amniotic fluid.
  • Poor growth of the child.
  • Second key point.
  • Congenital genetic defects.
  • Uneven blood exchange in twin pregnancies when both twins share the same placenta: This can lead to an undersupply of one twin…
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How Does A Doctor Recognize Insufficient Amniotic Fluid?

During routine ultrasound exams, a doctor can determine if the amount of amniotic fluid is too low

The following values indicate too little amniotic fluid:

  • Amniotic fluid index: less than 5 cm.
  • Deepest amniotic fluid deposit: less than 2 cm.
  • Two-diameter amniotic fluid depot: less than 15 cm2.

The so-called amniotic fluid index is usually at values between 8 and 18 cm. Lower values indicate oligohydramnios, higher values indicate polyhydramnios.

What Are The Dangers Of Too Little Amniotic Fluid?

If the amniotic sac contains too little amniotic fluid, the unborn child may be at risk. Indeed, the consequence of too little amniotic fluid may be that the child is very small at birth. In the worst case, infant death may occur around the time of birth.

In addition, low amniotic fluid increases the risk of a pinched umbilical cord. The baby then receives too little oxygen and other vital substances. If the umbilical cord is squeezed before or during birth, this is associated with a high risk. It often happens that the unborn child excretes stool (meconium) in the womb or in the course of birth and then breathes it in (so-called meconium aspiration). This impedes breathing, which can have serious consequences.

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If the amount of amniotic fluid is too low, the baby is exposed to higher stress during the birth process.

How Is Oligohydramnios Treated?

Fortunately, there are good treatment options for pregnant women with low amniotic fluid. An infusion (amniotic infusion) can be used to deliver a solution to the amniotic sac that contains a similar composition to amniotic fluid. The missing amount of amniotic fluid is thus replenished. In some cases, it is even enough for the pregnant woman to drink more. If the pregnancy is advanced or if the due date has already passed, induction of labor may also be considered. A Caesarean section must also be considered.

What Does Green Amniotic Fluid Mean?

Sometimes the baby excretes meconium while still in the womb. Due to this first bowel movement, the amniotic fluid becomes brownish-green in color is called green amniotic fluid. Normally, the first bowel movement occurs after birth.

Meconium forms as early as the sixth month of pregnancy. To learn more about what happens during this stage, go to: https://www.practicalmommy.com/entwicklung-des-babys-die-zweite-haelfte-der-schwangerschaft/

When Should You See The Doctor?

Throughout your pregnancy, you should always take advantage of all the preventive and check-up examinations offered. If your baby moves little or not at all in the womb, you should discuss these observations with your doctor. Also, if you experience anxiety or have a vague feeling that something is wrong, you should tell your doctor. You should also consult your doctor if you feel unwell, have trouble sleeping or feel restless. Any abnormalities or irregularities should be examined as soon as possible. Especially in case of pain of any kind, bleeding, or sensory disturbances, you should have the causes clarified. Fluid discharge from the vagina is a warning signal from your organism. In this case, you should consult a doctor so that immediate measures can be taken if necessary and medical care can be arranged.
Throughout your pregnancy, you should always take advantage of all the preventive and check-up examinations offered. If your baby moves little or not at all in the womb, you should discuss these observations with your doctor. Also, if you experience anxiety or have a vague feeling that something is wrong, you should tell your doctor. You should also consult your doctor if you feel unwell, have trouble sleeping or feel restless. Any abnormalities or irregularities should be examined as soon as possible. Especially in case of pain of any kind, bleeding, or sensory disturbances, you should have the causes clarified. Fluid discharge from the vagina is a warning signal from your organism. In this case, you should consult a doctor so that immediate measures can be taken if necessary and medical care can be arranged.
Throughout your pregnancy, you should always take advantage of all the preventive and check-up examinations offered. If your baby moves little or not at all in the womb, you should discuss these observations with your doctor. Also, if you experience anxiety or have a vague feeling that something is wrong, you should tell your doctor. You should also consult your doctor if you feel unwell, have trouble sleeping or feel restless. Any abnormalities or irregularities should be examined as soon as possible. Especially in case of pain of any kind, bleeding, or sensory disturbances, you should have the causes clarified. Fluid discharge from the vagina is a warning signal from your organism. In this case, you should consult a doctor so that immediate measures can be taken if necessary and medical care can be arranged.

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Is Green Amniotic Fluid Harmful To The Baby?

Green amniotic fluid rarely causes an emergency. Children with green amniotic fluid are more likely to suffer from infections, for example of the lungs, than children with normal amniotic fluid. Only in very rare cases does it happen that a child inhales green amniotic fluid during birth. Breathing problems are the result. However, there are no good treatment options for this case.

Green amniotic fluid rarely triggers an emergency. Children with green amniotic fluid suffer more frequently from infections, for example of the lungs than children with normal amniotic fluid. Only in very rare cases does it happen that a child inhales green amniotic fluid during birth. Breathing problems are the result. However, there are no good treatment options for this case.

If it is suspected that green amniotic fluid has been inhaled (meconium aspiration), the first measure is to aspirate the meconium from the mouth and throat. Breathing then usually returns to normal.

Also interesting:
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You can find out more about green amniotic fluid at: https://www.practicalmommy.com/gruenes-fruchtwasser-infektion-und-die-folgen/

Conclusion

Too little amniotic fluid is associated with dangers, but there are now good treatment options.

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