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Implantation Occurs in the Uterus
Implantation occurs in a woman's uterus. After an egg is fertilised, it travels through the Fallopian tube in which it was fertilised in and into the uterus. Once there, it burrows into the blood-vessel-rich lining of the uterine wall, which is called the endometrium. The implanted egg is nourished by the lining, and the placenta starts to develop.
Time Frame for Implantation in the Uterus
Implantation can occur just a few days after an egg has been fertilised. In the average pregnancy, however, implantation occurs between day 6 and day 12 following ovulation. Once implantation has occurred, the tissues of the developing placenta begin to produce the hormone human chorionic gonadotrophin (hCG), a hormone the body uses to support early pregnancy, and a woman may now receive a positive on a home pregnancy test.
Signs of Implantation
For most women, implantation occurs without any outward signs. Usually, a woman's first hint that implantation has occurred is a positive pregnancy test. However, some women do bleed a little following implantation. Implantation bleeding is typically light in flow, showing up as spotting that is far less than the bleeding typical of a normal period, and it may be red, pink or brownish. Typically, it lasts for just one day, although light spotting may continue for a few days in some cases.
When Implantation Fails
Sometimes implantation doesn't occur when it should. Many doctors believe this happens when there is something wrong with the developing embryo. In such cases, failed implantation may be nature's way of ensuring that a baby is not born deformed. Sometimes, however, implantation fails because of a hormonal imbalance in the woman's body or an insufficiency with the endometrial lining. When implantation does not occur, but the fertilised egg has reached the uterus, the pregnancy ends in miscarriage. Typically, the miscarriage occurs before a woman has any idea that she was pregnant at all.
Bleeding That Doesn't Indicate Implantation
While spotting may be completely normal in a pregnancy, especially when it is related to implantation, it's best to mention it to a doctor when it occurs. In some cases, spotting may not indicate implantation at all and may be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilised egg grows in a Fallopian tube. This type of pregnancy isn't viable and represents serious health risks for the mother. As such, it is important to rule out ectopic pregnancy when bleeding occurs in the first several weeks following conception.
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