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Placental lacunae?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Not sure if this terminology is correct, but a woman in my CB class said she has it and it is a risk factor but she doesn't really know what it is. Can anyone shed some light on this? I am having a hard time understanding what comes up on Google. It sounds like the lacunae are grooves in the placenta and when there are a lot of them, it is associated with placenta accreta. Is that right, and how might it affect her birth? Thanks to anyone with the knowledge to answer this!
post #2 of 4
They are probably saying she is at risk of having placenta accreta. Has she had prior uterine surgery or does she have placenta previa?
post #3 of 4
lacuna - a blank gap or missing part.

It sounds more like she's talking about making sure that the placenta comes out complete. If not and there is a cotyledon missing, it could be retained inside the uterus and cause infection or hemmorhage.

Hope this helps!
post #4 of 4

I'm not a professional. My understanding of lacunae derives entirely from one doctors explanation of what happened in my case (which did involve placenta previa). I could be wrong.

My understanding is that there are, in general, in a healthy placenta, pools of blood called lacunae.

In some cases (previa being the one that, naturally, springs to my mind, but also in cases of abruption, partial abruption, or other issues), the lacunae can rupture. If the particular lacuna is small, the bleeding may be inconsequential. If it's big, the blood loss can be dangerous for mother and baby. Even small bleeding causes some concern as the lacunae to some extent protect the oxygen transfer membrane between mother and babe, and damage to that membrane can result in fetal oxygen deprivation (which can result in severe brain injury or in death).

It's possible that the woman in your CB class didn't entirely understand her doctor's explanation. Frankly, the reason I understood my doctor's explanation was that I asked for it six weeks after the fact. Much of what was said to me about risks in my pregnancy went right over my head, while I frantically tried to process the idea that there were risks in my pregnancy.
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