NCLEX Review – Maternity Complications

Maternity Complications

Maternity Complications

Welcome to another week. My daughter who is in her first semester is on her Spring Break this week. If you have a break this week or another week in March or April, don’t forget to take at least a couple of days off from studying.

I have had a couple of my NCLEX tutor students ask about EKG’s and they wanted me to create a mini course for them. I’m working on the document and should have that for you in the next week or two. I have a question for you – would you like me to present it as a video or a pdf (or both). Let me know – you can leave us a comment on this post or you can post one on our Facebook page.

Some Reminders –

Here is our posting schedule –

Here was Prenatal part 1 and Prenatal part 2

Today we’ll be talking about Maternity Risks and on Thursday we’ll be talking about Labor and Delivery.

Pinterest posts about Maternal Risks –

Types of Abortions

Abortion may occur due to various factors such as fetal, placental, or maternal.

Fetal Causes The most common cause of early spontaneous abortion is abnormal development of the zygote, embryo or fetus. These abnormalities are incompatible with life and would have resulted in severe congenital anomalies had pregnancy not been aborted spontaneously.

Maternal Factors These are congenital or acquired conditions of the mother and environmental factors that had adversely affected pregnancy outcome and led to abortion. Such conditions include diabetes mellitus, incomplete cervix, exposure to radiation and infection.

    Placental Factors Placental factors usually cause abortion around the 14th week of gestation. These factors includes premature separation of the normally implanted placenta and abnormal placental implantation.

Abortion Types

*** Threatened Abortion            

Symptoms – occurring before the 20th week of gestation,  characterized by cramping and vaginal bleeding with no cervical dilation. It may subside or an incomplete abortion may follow.

Interventions –  Bedrest,  No coitus up to 2 weeks after bleeding stopped

*** Imminent or Inevitable Abortion

Symptoms –    membranes rupture and the cervix dilates,  characterized by lower abdominal cramping and bleeding.

Interventions –     Hospitalization,     D and C,     Oxytocin after D and C,     Sympathetic,     Understanding and emotional support

*** Incomplete Abortion            

Symptoms –    is characterized by expulsion of only part of the products of conception (usually the fetus).  Severe uterine cramping,  bleeding occur with cervical dilation.

Interventions –     D and C,     Oxytocin after D and C,     Sympathetic,     Understanding and emotional support

*** Complete Abortion

Symptoms –    characterized by complete expulsion of all products of conception,  light bleeding, mild uterine cramping,     passage of tissue,  closed cervix

Interventions –     There is no treatment other than rest is usually needed.    All of the tissues that came out should be saved for examination by a doctor to make sure that the abortion is complete.    The laboratory examination of the saved tissue may determine the cause of abortion.

*** Missed Abortion

Symptoms – intrauterine pregnancy is present but is no longer developing normally,     the cervix is closed, and the client may report dark brown vaginal discharge.  pregnancy test findings are negative.

Interventions –  Usually treated by induction of labor by dilation (or dilatation) and curettage (D & C).

+++ Recurrent or Habitual Abortion

Symptoms – characterized by spontaneous abortion of three or more consecutive pregnancies

Interventions – Trace the cause of recurrent abortion

*** Septic Abortion

S/S abortion complicated by infection,     foul smelling vaginal discharge,     uterine cramping,  fever

Interventions – Antibiotics as prescribed by your Obstetrician


Chorioamnionitis also known as intra-amniotic infection (IAI) is an inflammation of the fetal membranes (amnion and chorion) due to a bacterial infection. It typically results from bacteria ascending into the uterus from the vagina and is most often associated with prolonged labor.

Diabetes –

A power point –

A video –




Gestational Hypertension – this post is directed more at the patient – but contains some good information –


Preeclampsia (mild vs severe)



Sexually transmitted infections


Khan Academy has a series of videos that I would recommend that covers pregnancy in depth –

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