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Polyhydramnios: symptoms and causes

Polyhydramnios is a condition where excess amniotic fluid builds up in the uterus during pregnancy. Texas women should know that though it occurs in one percent of pregnancies and is usually harmless, it can lead to serious complications like pre-term labor and premature births. It could also lead to the placenta separating from the uterus wall before birth -- a condition called placental abruption.

Mild polyhydramnios usually does not exhibit symptoms. When it is moderate or severe, however, it could result in breathing problems, constipation or heartburn; experiencing a swelling in the vulva and lower extremities; and feeling huge or tight in the belly. Other symptoms, such as an enlarged uterus, can only be detected by the doctor. Another possible sign is if the doctor cannot feel the baby or hear a heartbeat.

The earlier that polyhydramnios appears (it can occur as early as 16 weeks into the pregnancy), the higher the chances of it becoming severe. As for what could cause moderate or severe polyhydramnios, they include fetal arrhythmia, congenital heart defects, a baby's inability to swallow and other birth defects.

Amniotic fluid can also build up when the mother either has diabetes or develops it during the pregnancy. Mismatched blood types can lead to the baby developing Rh disease, which in turn could result in polyhydramnios.

When it comes to treating the condition, there are various methods. However, the patient should always follow the doctor's orders. If she does so and the doctor makes a mistake out of negligence, then the situation may lay the ground for a birth injury claim. However, it must be shown that the doctor failed to adhere to an objective standard of care. This is where a lawyer can come in. The lawyer could also handle negotiations and prepare for litigation if a settlement cannot be reached.

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