The placenta is a very vital organ which connects the developing fetus to the uterus via the umbilical cord. The umbilical cord has 1 umbilical vein and 2 umbilical arteries. The placenta supplies nutrients and oxygen to the fetus from the mother’s blood and gets rid of wastes from the fetal body.
A bilobed placenta is a deviation from the normal shape of a placenta; such a placenta is split into two halves. The condition has not been linked to an increased risk of fetal abnormalities, although there is a raised risk of vaginal bleeding during and after pregnancy.
Regular and routine USG during pregnancy helps recognize and ascertain the presence of a bilobed placenta. With the correct ante-natal care and suitable management during delivery, the prognosis for such a case is good. The most common symptom of a bilobed placenta is bleeding during pregnancy. The condition has been related to multiple pregnancies, on the other hand there is no increased risk of fetal anomalies or fetal distress.
What Are The Causes Of Bilobed Placenta?
A bilobed placenta is known to occur in about 2 to 8 % of pregnancies. No distinctive racial, ethnic or geographical tendency has been observed yet.
Certain risk factors have been linked to a bilobed placenta are:
- An advanced maternal age, usually, when the woman is more than 35 years of age.
- A history of infertility.
- Diabetes mellitus.
- Cigarette smoking during pregnancy.
It is very essential that you understand that having a risk factor does not necessarily mean that one will develop the condition. A risk factor tends to increase your chance of getting a condition in comparison with a person who does not have the risk factors.
What’s more, not having a risk factor does not automatically signify that one will definitely not get the condition. You need to discuss the effect of your risk factors with your OB/GYN health care provider.
Usually, a bilobed placenta occurs because of an implantation of the placenta at one of the following locations in the uterus:
- Where there is reduced supply of blood.
- At a site of some prior surgery.
- Over the cervical opening.
- Over a uterine fibroid.
Complications Due To Bilobed Placenta
Complications associated with a Bilobed Placenta are:
- An increased chance of post partum hemorrhage because of retained placental tissue.
- An increased occurrence of Vasa Previa, a condition wherein the fetal blood vessels run across the maternal cervix; this brings about an increased danger of rupture and bleeding.
Is Bilobed Placenta Dangerous?
- For the fetus, the condition has not been known to cause any anomaly or distress. Nonetheless, timely diagnosis and intervention are always important.
- For, the mother however, there is an increased risk of bleeding after the delivery, and this calls for careful and vigilant monitoring.
- At present, there are no methods to prevent the occurrence of a bilobed placenta.
- Correct ante-natal care is very vital to make sure that you have a healthy pregnancy and an uncomplicated delivery.
- The prognosis / outcome for such a case is known to be fairly excellent with regular and periodic checkups, follow ups and scanning as well as the appropriate care and management at delivery.