When it comes to knowing which is an excellent placental position in the 6th month of pregnancy, it’s determined by which position receives regular bloody supply. Considering this fact, anterior, posterior, fundal, or lateral are all good positions. No pregnancy is entirely risk-free, but a low-lying placenta or placenta previa is considered risky for both the mom and the baby. There’s a chance the placenta will grow upwards with the uterus, so it doesn’t block the cervix anymore and reduces risk by the time you give birth. Your doctor will monitor the baby’s placental growth and do an ultrasound at 32 weeks to determine its final position.
The placenta is a crucial organ aiding in providing the oxygen and nutrients needed by a growing baby in the womb. It helps remove waste products from the baby’s blood, keeping it healthy.
The placenta position can concern a mother and the baby as it decides how easy or complicated it’ll be to deliver the baby. A few common positions don’t call for concern, but there’s one such position that can block the entrance for birth, complicating things.
While the placenta position can change as the womb grows in the third trimester, there’s a possibility things might not change so much. Let’s look at what’s considered a good position in the 6th month of pregnancy?
Importance and growth of the placenta
The placenta is an organ that develops from fertilized eggs, attaches to your uterus wall, and connects to the baby through the umbilical cord.
It provides oxygen and nutrients and removes the waste products from your baby’s blood.
Depending on the quality of the placenta, the baby’s health is also determined, so it plays a massive role in your baby’s development.
By the end of 10 weeks after the fertilization process, the placenta is fully formed and is around 20 cm in diameter, 2.5 cm thick, and weighs about one-sixth of your baby’s weight at term.
An ultrasound is done to check the placenta’s initial position and see if it’s placed so that it won’t create a pregnancy complication. An ultrasound is done at 12 weeks and then around the 20th week (second trimester of pregnancy) to recheck the position.
In this 6th-month ultrasound, the placenta still has room to grow in an appropriate direction until your delivery date to avoid any complications. The last ultrasound is performed around 32 weeks.
Good and bad placental positions
Different placental positions determine if the delivery will be complicated or not. Typically the placenta is located at the top of the uterus, but it could also be placed on the front wall, back wall, left or right lateral, and cover your cervix.
Different implantations create a different bloody supply because the blood flow through the uterus isn’t uniform.
When the placenta is implanted in the more normal places such as the front, back, lateral, or top of the uterus, there’re rarely any complications.
The one where the placenta seems to cover your cervix is considered a complicated position because of the bloody supply.
Let’s look at what these different placental positions could mean for your baby and which is optimum.
When you have a placenta forming on the top region of the uterus between the two fallopian tube openings, it’s known as the fundus or the fundal placenta. It’s quite a common position, and the risk is low.
Some people might experience an increased association between the placenta being in the fundal position and breaking their water before 37 weeks.
This position creates the weakest point of the membrane over the cervix, thus leading to premature rupture of membranes.
It usually leads to short third term pregnancies.
When the placenta attaches to the front of the stomach, it’s known as the anterior position.
This is also a safe position and doesn’t make much difference to the birth of your baby. They are still getting their nourishment properly in this positioning.
Since it’s positioned in the front, it might create extra space or cushion between your stomach and your baby. So you might feel kicks or punches of the baby a bit delayed as the placenta acts as a cushion.
Your baby might also be in a back-to-back position which means your baby’s spine is against yours. This does make the process of labor longer and more painful. But in most cases, the baby rotates to an optimum position for birth during labor and delivery, making the whole process easier.
This placental position could also result in increased back pain due to the baby being in the back-to-back position and making specific tests challenging to perform.
Some studies have shown an increase in induction rates, prolonged rupture of membranes, more likely to have a cesarean section due to a failure to progress, and higher incidence of postpartum hemorrhage and manual removal of the placenta.
Some studies have shown a slight increase in pregnancy-induced hypertension, gestational diabetes, placental abruption, intrauterine growth restriction, and fetal death in utero.
When the placenta is attached to the back wall of the uterus, it’s known as the posterior placenta.
You can feel your baby’s movement quite easier compared to when the anterior placenta. You have the advantage in this position as it’s an optimum position for birth.
When the placenta positions itself on your uterus’s left or right side, it’s a lateral position. Your baby will get the same uniform blood as the anterior or posterior.
In the lateral position, they will receive blood flow from usually one of the uterine and/or ovarian arteries and a small contribution of blood flow from the other uterine artery.
It could increase your chances of having pre-eclampsia, but the process of labor and birth aren’t affected.
In a few studies, this position is also identified with an increased risk of having a breech baby, so these are the least common position.
When your placenta is forming in the initial months, it will change its position as the womb grows.
Women whose placenta attaches to the lower down and may cover some or all of the cervix might experience a complicated delivery.
In the initial stage, it’s known as low lying placenta, and as the womb grows, the placenta might grow and move upwards out of the way of the cervix, but in some cases, it might grow downwards. This position is known as placenta praevia, causing an issue.
The low-lying placenta is less than 20 mm from the cervix, but when it’s completely covering it, it’s known as placenta praevia. It’s rare and is found to be 1 in 200 pregnancies.
But it’s risky for a vaginal delivery when the placenta is covering the cervix, and a cesarean is required. You may be recommended bed rest from 34 weeks of pregnancy as it’s associated with sudden major vaginal bleeding, and complete bed rest is recommended.
Certain cases increase the risk of having this position, including:
- Maternal age greater than 35 years (late pregnancy)
- Previous placenta previa
- Previous cesarean delivery
- Smoke cigarettes/cocaine user
- Have had fertility treatment to get pregnant
- Have endometriosis
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
An ultrasound is required at 32 weeks (third trimester of pregnancy)to monitor the placental position and how to manage the situation.
The potential risk with placenta
It could be risky if the pregnant woman cannot deliver the placenta within 30 to 60 minutes of giving birth.
If the placenta doesn’t come out entirely or not at all, it’s called the retained placenta. A person might experience heavy bleeding and a risk of infection.
Can I change my placenta position?
Unfortunately, you can’t change the position of your placenta even if you wish to, but it’s common for the placenta to adjust and grow as the uterus grows.
If you’ve got a low-lying placenta in the second trimester, your placenta could grow upwards, pulling you away from a risky birth. But it could also grow downwards, which isn’t in your hands.
An ultrasound done at 32 weeks will help your doctor consider options for the safe birth of your baby, in case it’s a risky one.
Does posterior placenta mean boy?
Ramzi’s theory became famous in 2011 when he claimed that when the placenta attaches to the right of the uterus, women are more likely to have a boy, and when it’s connected to the left, they’re more likely to have a girl.
But there isn’t enough research or science there to back this theory. It could have a possibility where anterior means a girl and posterior a boy, but it’s not sure. Using the placenta to identify your baby’s gender isn’t an accurate way to do so.
Can placenta previa fix itself?
When the ultrasound is done in the second trimester can let you know the position of the placenta. There’s still time until you achieve full term, and the placenta still has room to grow and change its position.
If the placenta is low-lying or a case of marginal placenta previa, it can grow upwards, unblocking the cervix and removing a high-risk pregnancy from the equation.
How do I know my placenta is healthy?
You should take care by eating well-balanced nutritional meals for your baby’s development and for the placenta to be healthy.
You should include lots of healthy food which is nutrient and calorie-rich to form a healthy placenta.
If there’s an issue, your doctor will get to know about it during your first ultrasound. They may then look at the calcium deposits, placental thickness, and fetus size.
Worrying about your placenta is as important as worrying about the birth of your baby. It’s the most vital organ for the baby as it provides them with nourishment and removes the waste.
The position of the placenta is vital in determining the risk of birth. While usually, it’s nothing to worry about, there might be cases of low-lying or placenta previa positions.
As long as your doctor monitors the placenta position throughout your pregnancy, things can be managed. With their help and prenatal care, you can deliver a healthy baby without risking your own life.
If you have concerns, it’s better to have a discussion with your doctor to clear all your doubts.