The Function from the Mucus Connect Pregnancy and Labor

 

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The Role of the Mucus Plug During Labor Before labor begins, the balance of a woman’s hormones starts to change. Estrogen levels rise as the process of fetal development nears completion. As a result, the plug starts to thin and the cervix gradually softens and dilates. According to whattoexpect.com, it seals the cervix, which is the opening to a woman’s uterus when she is pregnant.

Even though the mucus plug is a mystery to some people, it has a very important role to play. Since the mucus plug seals the cervix up, it protects the baby from things from the outside world that could be harmful to him or her. Role of Mucus Plug in Labor. The mucus plug has an important part before or during labor.

The pregnancy progresses as different hormones are produced at various stages whereas labor alters the balance of women’s hormones. Labor increases the estrogen hormone levels to make the mucus thin. It helps protect the fetus and prevents infections.

Mucus plug in early pregnancy is a gelatinous mass that eventually fills the cervical canal. It develops after the implantation of the ovum in the uterine cavity, which usually happens by the end of the first month of your pregnancy. The mucus plug comes loose and dislodges when the cervix starts to open (dilate) as labor nears. As the cervix dilates, the mucus is pushed out into the vagina.

Seeing the mucus plug is a sign you are approaching labor, or it can be an early sign of labor itself. Read up on some of the other commons signs of labor, including your water breaking. The mucus plug acts as a barrier and can keep unwanted bacteria and other sources of infection from traveling into your uterus. Losing a mucus plug during pregnancy. What causes cervical mucus to change during pregnancy?

Cervical mucus, also called leukorrhea, is a normal part of a woman’s cycle. It helps keep the vaginal tissues healthy by protecting them. The mucus plug thins and falls out in response to a rise in estrogen (as well as pressure from the baby’s head pushing on the cervix) as labor approaches. It tends to happen from the 38 th week of pregnancy onwards, though it can happen earlier.

Most commonly, it comes out around 2 to 5 days before labor begins. The mucus plug is a thick collection of mucus that seals the opening of the cervix. This stops bacteria from entering your uterus, but once labor nears, this plug loosens and drops out. Some women. Think of it like this: both losing your mucus plug and the bloody show are triggered by your changing cervix as is begins to dilate and prepare for labor.

That means that although the bloody show and losing your mucus plug are in theory mutually exclusive, they often go hand-in-hand.

List of related literature:

A greater quantity of cervical mucus is produced during pregnancy, and a mucus plug is produced to make it more difficult for infections to pass from the vagina to the uterus.

“The Mother of All Pregnancy Books: An All-Canadian Guide to Conception, Birth and Everything In Between” by Ann Douglas
from The Mother of All Pregnancy Books: An All-Canadian Guide to Conception, Birth and Everything In Between
by Ann Douglas
Wiley, 2011

A thick mucus plug, formed in the cervix as a mechanical barrier during pregnancy, is expelled at variable times before or during labour.

“Physical Examination and Health Assessment Canadian E-Book” by Carolyn Jarvis, Annette J. Browne, June MacDonald-Jenkins, Marian Luctkar-Flude
from Physical Examination and Health Assessment Canadian E-Book
by Carolyn Jarvis, Annette J. Browne, et. al.
Elsevier Health Sciences, 2018

during pregnancy, and create a thick mucus plug at the cervix, which helps prevent uterine infections.

“Visualizing Human Biology” by Kathleen A. Ireland
from Visualizing Human Biology
by Kathleen A. Ireland
Wiley, 2017

When this occurs, the mucous plug that has sealed the uterus during pregnancy is dislodged from the cervix, tearing small capillaries in the process.

“Introduction to Maternity and Pediatric Nursing E-Book” by Gloria Leifer
from Introduction to Maternity and Pediatric Nursing E-Book
by Gloria Leifer
Elsevier Health Sciences, 2018

At the onset of labor, the mucous plug that fills the cervical canal during pregnancy is expelled as a result of cervical softening and increased pressure of the presenting part.

“Maternity and Pediatric Nursing” by Susan Scott Ricci, Terri Kyle
from Maternity and Pediatric Nursing
by Susan Scott Ricci, Terri Kyle
Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2009

This large clump of mucus is passed through the vagina as the cervix effaces and dilates in preparation for delivery, although many hours or even days can elapse between passage of the plug and the onset of labor.

“The New Harvard Guide to Women's Health” by Karen J. Carlson, Stephanie A. Eisenstat, Stephanie A. Eisenstat, M.D., Terra Diane Ziporyn, Alvin & Nancy Baird Library Fund, Harvard University. Press
from The New Harvard Guide to Women’s Health
by Karen J. Carlson, Stephanie A. Eisenstat, et. al.
Harvard University Press, 2004

Effacement and dilation cause expulsion of the mucus plug that sealed the cervix during pregnancy, rupturing small cervical capillaries in the process.

“Foundations of Maternal-Newborn and Women's Health Nursing” by Sharon Smith Murray, MSN, RN, C, Emily Slone McKinney, MSN, RN, C
from Foundations of Maternal-Newborn and Women’s Health Nursing
by Sharon Smith Murray, MSN, RN, C, Emily Slone McKinney, MSN, RN, C
Elsevier Health Sciences, 2013

A mucus plug, created by cervical secretions from proliferation of the glands of the cervical mucosa early in pregnancy, serves the function of a protective barrier and closes the cervical canal throughout pregnancy.

“A Comprehensive Textbook of Midwifery & Gynecological Nursing” by Annamma Jacob
from A Comprehensive Textbook of Midwifery & Gynecological Nursing
by Annamma Jacob
Jaypee Brothers,Medical Publishers Pvt. Limited, 2018

mucus plug, (in obstetrics) a collection of thick mucus in the uterine cervix that is often expelled at the onset of dilation of the cervix, just before labour begins or in its early hours.

“Mosby's Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing and Health Professions Australian & New Zealand Edition E-Book” by Peter Harris, Sue Nagy, Nicholas Vardaxis
from Mosby’s Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing and Health Professions Australian & New Zealand Edition E-Book
by Peter Harris, Sue Nagy, Nicholas Vardaxis
Elsevier Health Sciences, 2009

Loss of mucous plug: As cervix softens and begins to open, the protective plug of mucus in the cervix is lost, often with small amount of blood.

“Lippincott's Content Review for NCLEX-RN” by Diane M. Billings
from Lippincott’s Content Review for NCLEX-RN
by Diane M. Billings
Wolters Kluwer Health/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2008

Oktay Kutluk

Kutluk Oktay, MD, FACOG is one of the world's foremost experts in fertility preservation as well as ovarian stimulation and in vitro fertilization for infertility treatments. He developed and performed the world's first ovarian transplantation procedures as well as pioneered new ovarian stimulation protocols for embryo and oocyte freezing for breast and endometrial cancer patients.

Mail: [email protected]
Telephone: +1 (877) 492-3666

Biography: https://medicine.yale.edu/profile/kutluk_oktay/
Bibliography: oktay_bibliography

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18 comments

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  • is it necessary that mucus plug has to be red pink or brownish in colour? I’m 39 weeks n experiencing a lot of mucus discharge white and sometimes offwhite in colour. is this occasional heavy discharge my mucus plug slowly coming out?

  • It can olso take up to 2 weeks till labor after loosing the plug by the way, Depends on person. Olso sometimes it is not getting out at all.

  • Mine just fall this morning oh boy it looks like dark not yellow I had doctor appointment! 39 weeks check and then she put her finger on me that shit hurts and then this morning something huge keep coming out my vigi with little pain but not like contractions I’m 39+1 today

  • I had my cervix checked last Wednesday. Thursday I lost a big chunk of brown tinged mucous. Then nothing. Yesterday I was pink spotting and this morning I woke up to blood tinged mucous. I go in at 10 this morning for an induction (was already scheduled) but I’m glad to know things in my body are progressing a little before my scheduled induction:) I’ll be 37 weeks

  • Thank you so much for explaining in details about the mucus plug and what it means. Also, thanks for sharing your experience and pictures as well. This was very helpful to know.

  • I have had 2 membrane sweepes performed (week apart one from another) with first one, after about 12hrs I’ve been losing tons of mucus plugI thought it was a bloody show at first as it was pinkinsh/redish at first, then as day passed it turned into light brown, then eventually mucus onlyit was quite shocking how much was coming out btw �� anyways after 3 days of having all that discharge, things have slowed down (i had qst sweep 40weeks) and only starchy egg white discharge was coming outusualy in the morning. I had another sweep at 41weeksfully affaced, 4cm dilated, super strechy cervix and bulging waterI’m nearly 30hrs after and NOTHING is happening �� I had some pains 1st 24hrs and tiny bit of old blood with little bit of dischargenothing compared to 1st sweep.
    I’m booked for an induction in 5 days, but was thinking if having another sweep would help? Or is it pointless for me? It hurt like hell second time and just worried I’ll have sore cervix for my induction. I’m so fed up �� all signs are showing i should be popping any time, but nothing is happeningWHY ��

  • Thank you for this video I’m due this Thanksgiving 2019 and I keep getting told about the mucus plug but had no idea what I was looking for as this is my first pregnancy, you’re amazing ��

  • I am AMAZED at the amount of pregnant women who don’t know what a mucus plug is! I am shook, the more I watch these videos the more I find women who are just learning about it when they are 30-40 weeks pregnant ��

  • Okay so I am 31 weeks pregnant. I have been losing my mucus plug for three days and I just lost a bunch in the shower… does this mean I am going into preterm labor?? I went to the hospital three days ago and they had checked me I wasn’t dilated and I was still thick. Sooo??? Could it be happening now??

  • Mucus plug came out this morning. 38 weeks and 4 days pregnant. Don’t feel any different yet. But I heard it doesn’t necessarily mean baby is coming in 24 hours… it just means your cervix has soften enough to lose the mucus plug and your body is preparing for labor soon. We shall see. Can’t wait to meet my baby girl������

  • I’m 39 weeks and had creamy mucus mixed with brown blood when I wiped… not sure if that would be considered a bloody show but it was brown blood mixed with mucus ����‍♀️

  • With my daughter my mucus plug came out and I gave birth a few hours later, I am now 37 weeks and 4 days and my mucus plug has been coming out since yesterday. But I’m still not dilated. Every pregnancy is different

  • Thanks for the picture because I’m lost!!! I’m 38 weeks. I see from the comments it can come out in parts too����‍♀️������I just pray I know when it happens as well as when my water breaks…I here that varies too.

  • I’m 36 weeks and this is helpful. I am high risk and had many vaginal exams and I swore the discharge was the plug. I am dilated 1 cm. Thank you!

  • 39 weeks today, wipe and light pink with cramping no mucous
    .
    UPDATE: it was the start of my labor. Started having contractions that afternoon. Had baby girl that same night. a week early. Met my babygirl.

  • No you can go into labour weeks from now not the next day allways mine came out with my daughter days later I went into labour and this time it’s allready been two days ago and nothing yet and I’m glad because I’m not 37 weeks yet only 35+5!

  • With my first baby I lost it at 34 weeks and was born at 36 weeks �� and now I’m 32 weeks pregnant ���� and I just lost it:/ but hoping to deliver 36 week or more along ����������������

  • I’m 40 weeks mines just came out today I could be going into labor any day now can’t wait to meet my baby girl! Congratulations to you all!!!!