The occurrence of abdominal pain during pregnancy may be considered normal or it may point to the presence of certain problems. Apart from many reasons this pain may be caused by the round ligament. The round ligament of the uterus is located at the uterus horns. Round ligament pain develops as a consequence of normal changes that take place in the pelvis during pregnancy. Still, any kind of abdominal pain during pregnancy must be reported to a health care provider and this way a doctor can identify the actual cause of the pain and treat it accordingly.
Why does Round Ligament Pain Occurs?
This particular pain occurs due to stretching of the round ligament. This commonly affects right side of the pelvis. Prior the pregnancy the uterus is the size of a pear and once it starts growing the round ligament starts to stretch. It becomes very long and thin. Stretching of the ligament leads to pulling and tugging of the nearby nerves and other sensitive structures which eventually causes pain. This pain can be rather uncomfortable but it is considered normal. A sharp pain is usually triggered by a ligament spasm, involuntary contraction or a cramp. It may occur at any time of the day or night. The pain can be also induced by exercising.
Presentation of Round Ligament Pain during Pregnancy
The pain typically occurs during early pregnancy. It has been reported that women usually complain about the onset of pain between 12th and 15th week of the pregnancy. Once the pain starts it usually continues until delivery. Fortunately, after delivery the pain subsides since the round ligament gradually returns to its original size.
Women suffering from round ligament pain commonly report mild to moderate pain which is frequently felt in the right side of the abdomen. The pain may be induced by getting up from the bed, walking and physical activity.
Treatment for Round ligament Pain during Pregnancy
Even if a pregnant woman has been diagnosed with round ligament pain she is due to consult her doctor in case the pain intensifies or becomes persistent. Even additional symptoms such as fever, bleeding from the vagina etc which accompany frequent episodes of ligament pain require prompt hospitalization and appropriate treatment.
The cornerstone of the treatment for round ligament pain during pregnancy is rest. Plenty of rest will reduce discomfort while activities such as stretching of the abdominal area may cause increase in pain. This is why a woman must abstain from all the activities that induce pain. If the pain does not subside with rest a woman is supposed to consult her doctor who may prescribe certain medications or recommend some maneuvers that will help in pain reduction.