Bleeding in an IVF Pregnancy

In Vitro fertilisation, or IVF, is a treatment for infertility. The procedure begins when a woman takes fertility drugs to produce multiple eggs. After the eggs develop they are harvested under anaesthesia, fertilised in the lab with her partner's sperm and placed back in her body. If a woman gets pregnant as she may experience bleeding. According to a study of 70 women published in the medical journal Human Reproduction by J.A. Goldman and J. Askenazi bleeding is more common in IVF pregnancies than in pregnancies that were conceived naturally. There are multiple causes for such bleeding.

Brown Blood

If a woman has brown blood this is often meaningless. Brown blood usually old blood from a previous menstrual cycle. The body may shed parts of the endometrium after it starts to establish a viable pregnancy.

Pink Blood

Many perfectly healthy women will have some pinkish spotting. The spotting does not necessarily mean the pregnancy is threatened. A doctor may have you come in just in case if it persists.

Red Blood

If a woman has red blood flow after an IVF procedure and after her pregnancy has been confirmed by a blood test, this may be normal or it may indicate a threatened miscarriage. If there is a threatened miscarriage a doctor may ask the woman to remain on bed rest for a period of time in order to reduce pressure on her cervix. This period of time is determined by the state of the pregnancy. The bleeding may resolve by itself and mean nothing.

Vanishing Twin

A woman who undergoes an IVF procedure has a significant chance of multiple pregnancy. The chance per cycle varies from clinic to clinic. If the woman gets pregnant with more than one embryo or her embryo splits in two this can result in a twin pregnancy 1. If the second pregnancy is not viable, her body may reabsorb it. This process can result in bleeding. Your doctor will advice you about a further course of action.


If the bleeding is heavy and red with thick clots this may mean a miscarriage after the procedure. Doctors will watch the pregnancy closely with ultrasounds and blood work to check if the pregnancy is viable. If the pregnancy is clearly chromosomally abnormal, a doctor may advise you to wait for a natural miscarriage. The doctor may do a medical procedure called a dilation and cutterage designed to complete the miscarriage if it's deemed medically necessary.