Water breaking is medically referred to as ‘Rupture of membrane.’ It refers to the leakage or drainage of the fluid from the vagina as a result of a breach in the membrane or bag surrounding both the baby and the water in the womb of a pregnant woman. Usually described as an early sign of labour, it may occur when labour has advanced or occasionally many days prior to the onset of labour. Although, often noticed at term, it can occur well before term, at a time the baby is not matured enough to be delivered hence, posing a major risk to the unborn baby and to the mother. Because of the various risks associated with prolonged period of water breaking before the onset of labour, and due to the varying manner with which it may present, it is important that pregnant women be aware of symptoms and signs that may suggest water breaking in pregnancy and immediately avail themselves with the opportunity to present early in the hospital to see their doctor.
Signs that your water bag might have broken include a sudden gosh of water, usually described as a sudden unexpected flow of warm fluid goshing down the vagina and the thigh. This may or may not occur during uterine contraction and is associated with massive soaking of your cloth, underwears and seat. It may also present as a trickling of fluid down your thigh that may come on and off. While the first scenario is usually seen when the water bag breaks below the baby’s head, the second scenario is seen usually due to a breach in the water bag high up and above the baby’s head. In both cases, prompt presentation in the hospital for a proper vaginal examination to confirm the situation is required for adequate and proper management.