Abdominal hematoma after c-section
14 February, 2017
I am 9 weeks postpartum and have still not been able to get to mikvah. My birth was an unplanned c section, with significant adhesions noted when the incision was being closed. I have continued seeing dark red/brown staining (on minipads) throughout the weeks since birth. Discussed with my doc at 6 week check. Ultrasound showed abdominal hematoma that is draining via my uterus. She confirmed that uterine lining looks normal and the draining hematoma is cause of bleeding/staining and not clear how long will take to drain fully. What do I do? How long to wait??
Mazal tov on the recent birth of your baby!
While many women are able to get to mikveh by 6-8 weeks postpartum, it is also normal for it to take longer for the bleeding to subside to the point where it is possible to count seven clean days.
Even if this bleeding is dam makkah (which it possibly is), you still need acceptable bedikot (minimally a hefsek taharah and one bedikah each on days 1 and 7), which is difficult while you are actively bleeding. If the bleeding is erratic, and you are able to perform this minimum number of bedikot, you may disregard any other stains found and omit the rest of the bedikot. As long as you have an acceptable hefsek and day 1 and day 7 bedikot, you may immerse. However, if the bleeding occurs daily and you can't get acceptable bedikot, unfortunately, this means that you just have to give your body more time and wait for the bleeding to ease up. Once the bleeding is no longer reddish, you may attempt a hefsek taharah. Stains found on a hefsek or bedikah that are light brown (the color of coffee with milk) with no reddish hue are acceptable. Other shades of brown can be brought to a halachic authority for evaluation, explaining your situation.
If the bleeding has not subsided within another week or two we recommend going back to your doctor for a follow up.
Please feel free to get back to us with any further questions.
This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.
For further questions or comments:
The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.
Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under yoatzot.org.