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When to contact your hospital, doctor or midwife

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Many women are unsure whether they should contact the hospital, their doctor or midwife when certain problems arise.

The best advice is that if you are worried about anything, contact your doctor, midwife or hospital, however minor you may think it is; if it is bothering you then you need to speak to someone. It is better to find out it may be a false alarm rather than ignoring problems that could harm you or your baby.

If you are concerned your baby’s movements have reduced or stopped you should contact your hospital of care straight away for advice, don’t wait.

Contact your hospital, doctor or midwife immediately if you notice any of these things:

  • Bleeding - always get advice for any vaginal bleeding - whether it is a small amount, large amount, dark or bright blood.
  • Waters breaking (ruptured membranes) or any fluid loss from your vagina - your waters may break at the beginning of labour or before the start of labour.
  • Any abdominal pains that are not helped by paracetamol (eg Panadol**) or that last more than a couple of hours.
  • A headache that won't go away, blurred vision or spots before your eyes.
  • Swelling in your hands or face, or persistent swelling of your feet.
  • A high temperature.
  • Feeling dizzy or fainting.
  • Vomiting that won't stop.
  • Jaundice - when your skin or the whites of your eyes turn yellow.
  • Ongoing severe itching which starts on the hands and soles of the feet, then spreads to the trunk
  • Burning or stinging when you pass urine.

Contact your hospital, doctor or midwife immediately if you notice any of these things

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The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see your doctor or midwife.


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