Placental Abruption
Placental abruption is a rare pregnancy complication
(about 1% of pregnancies) that refers to premature
detachment of a normally situated placenta. The
placenta is an organ in the uterus (a hollow organ in
which a baby develops) that links the blood supply of the
mother to the developing baby and by which the baby
can release wastes. In humans, it can occur any time
after the 20th week of gestation. This condition is that
main cause of bleeding late in the pregnancy. Placental
abruption is treated as a serious medical condition due
to the risk of death to the mother and of the baby.
FEATURED BOOK: What to Expect When You're Expecting

Treatment is needed to improve outcome and depends on the stage of pregnancy and the
seriousness of the condition. Fetal monitoring is sometimes all that is needed. If there are
indications of fetal distress, emergency delivery is often done. There are many factors
that can lead to placental abruption, one of which is pre-eclampsia.  Preeclampsia is a
severe condition that occurs in the 2nd half of pregnancy which is characterized by a
sudden onset of high blood pressure with edema (a type of swelling), and/or abnormal
amounts of protein in the urine. Placental abruption is also known as abruptio placentae.

Placental abruption comes from the Latin word "ab" meaning "away," the Latin word
“rumpere” meaning “to break,” and the Latin word “placenta” meaning “a cake.” Put the
words together and you get “to break away a cake.”
"Where Medical Information is Easy to Understand"™