Postpartum endometritis is an infection of the lining in the uterus.
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Postpartum endometriosis is caused by bacteria that may be in the mother before childbirth. Bacteria could also enter the body during childbirth.
- Health problems like diabetes and anemia
- Immune system problems
- Vaginal infection
- Lack of prenatal care
Things during delivery that could raise the risk of postpartum endometriosis are:
- Cesarean section delivery
- Postpartum hemorrhage
- Being in labor for a long time
- Membranes that are broken for a long time during labor
- Devices put in the uterus before, during, or after birth
- Newborn stool (meconium) in amniotic fluid
- Placenta pieces that may remain in the uterus after delivery
- Bacterial infection of the membranes and amniotic fluid
Symptoms may start 2 days to 6 weeks after giving birth. They include:
- Fever and chills
- Belly pain and tenderness
- Foul smell or blood coming from the vagina
- Pain when passing urine (pee)
The doctor will ask about symptoms and past health. A physical exam will be done. The diagnosis is often based on symptoms and recent childbirth. Tests to look for the kind of bacteria causing the problem include:
- Urine tests and cultures
- Blood tests
The goal of treatment is to get rid of the infection. This is done with antibiotics.
Not all infections can be prevented. Medical care while pregnant may help lower the chance of some infections. Medicine may be given before a cesarean section to reduce the risk.
- Endometritis (postpartum). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/condition/endometritis-postpartum.
- Martingano, D., Singh, S., et al. Azithromycin in the treatment of preterm prelabor rupture of membranes demonstrates a lower risk of chorioamnionitis and postpartum endometritis with an equivalent latency period compared with erythromycin antibiotic regimens. Infect Dis Obstet Gynecol, 2020; 2093530.
- Postpartum endometritis. Patient UK website. Available at: http://patient.info/doctor/postpartum-endometritis.
- Beverly Siegal, MD, FACOG
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