Understanding Implantation Bleeding

Implantation bleeding is a pink or brown vaginal discharge that generally occurs six to 12 days after ovulation and fertilization. Most women do not experience implantation bleeding, and doctors suggest that just 1/3 pregnant women will report any such discharge at or around the time they find out they are pregnant. The discharge occurs when the fertilized egg implants in the uterus, which is why it is referred to as implantation bleeding.

Usually, you can test for pregnancy and get an accurate result right around the time that you experience implantation bleeding, though your hcg levels may not be high enough to register a positive until 2 or 3 days after implantation.


Many women get scared when they see implantation bleeding or assume that they must not be pregnant because it looks like period blood. Cramping, backache, or increased bleeding does not usually accompany implantation bleeding. For most women, implantation bleeding is simply a bit of brown or pink colored discharge mixed in with a clear discharge.


If you have already confirmed your pregnancy and it is more than 10 days since fertilization, you probably will not see the implantation bleeding, so if you see blood you should call your doctor and follow his or her instructions carefully as you could be experiencing a miscarriage.

If you do believe you are experiencing implantation bleeding, you can go ahead and test for pregnancy like you normally would. Many women assume that the blood will affect the results of a standard home pregnancy test, but this is not the case. If there is hCG present in your urine, a home pregnancy test may show a positive result.

If there is no hCG present in the urine, it will come back negative. Because your urine and the bloody discharge come from different parts of the body, the small amount of implantation bleeding will not skew the results of your test. If for some reason the test is negative but you do not continue to bleed as you would with your period, test in 2-3 days to give you body time to produce a high enough level of hCG to be picked up by your test.

If you still have not started your period within a week and you do not get a positive test result, you may want to contact your doctor and ask her how you should proceed as he or she may want you to have a blood test done to determine if you are pregnant.

Luckily, because most women do not experience implantation bleeding, there is no need to concern yourself with this. If you are worried that you did not experience this bleeding because your friend did, don’t assume that there is something wrong with your pregnancy. Whether or not a woman experiences implantation bleeding doesn’t seem to affect the outcome or overall health of a pregnancy, so as long as the bleeding is just a little bit or you don’t bleed at all, implantation bleeding need not be a concern to you!

  • confused

    Hi I had my period on 12th December as normal. I am actively trying to conceive. My period was due 8th January. From 1st January to 5th I had very light brown spotting, not enough to use a tampon or a pad but it was still there. On the day that my period was due I had a negative pregnancy test. My period came on 9th January but is different to every month- it is unpredictable light and heavy on and off with a large amount of stretchy clear discharge (similar to when I am ovulating). I have done another pregnancy test today (11th January) with a negative result. If anyone has any ideas what this could be it would really help. Thanks.

  • Angyl15

    Hi! My husband and I have been trying to get pregnant for over a year now and we’ve just recently started using opk’s to help. On my two most fertile days (confirmed with both positive opk’s) we had sex. After the second day I bled immediately after sex. I shrugged it off as just being a little rough. Since then, I’ve been spotting off and on for almost two weeks. It’s always bright red and I get very mild cramps. I’ve been having dizzy spells, weight gain, my boobs are more tender than usual, been gassy, and I’ve been more thirsty than usual. I’ve taken a pregnancy test a few days earlier than I know I should (about 4 days before my period is due) and it was negative. I’m so confused. I never spot in between periods and I’ve never experienced anything like this before. I’m always able to predict my cycles and I’m always regular. Any ideas on what it could be?

  • dour

    my period was December 20th 31 days and my ovulation day was January 6 and implantation was date January 15 ….. and it did come on January 15 I was supposed to receive it on January 20 the earliest I get it is January 19 but I bleed very lightly on jan 15 and the 16 I started bleeding very heavy and it stopped on the 17 and started spotting on Sunday the 18 and til like Wednesday21 or Thursday 22 can this be my period or implantation and yes I took a pregnancy test it was N but it just Dnt feel right

  • catwomen

    ok, omg if someone would know about these please reply: So I was on BC for 10 years, back in June 2014 I decided to stop the pill, it began with an irregular periods up to October! I would get 35-40 cycle coming November I have finally stayed on the 32/33 day cycle considered normal! so it is February 2015 3 months of completely normal I been trying so hard for a baby_ I finished my last period Jan18,2015 had sex Jan 21st 3 days after, Jan 24/25 and 27 on the 27th I had spotting the next morning when I went to pee just when I wiped and lil cramps throughout the day, coming the next day again spotting then NOTHING my next period should be Feb 15,2015 in a couple of days could I been experiencing implantation bleeding? could I’ve had ovulated 3 days after my finished period? someone please please explain I will test if I do not get my period, But I have been drinking and living my normal life just a lil concerned :(

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    Depends on how long you bled for. The first day of bleeding is where you count from. For a 33 day cycle, you would have ovulated around day 18 of your cycle. If you had sex around then, then yes, you could be pregnant.

  • chinita

    I haven’t had my period in 2 months and yesterday I experienced the light blood but I’ve taken pregnancy tests and all say I’m not pregnant… I’m confused

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    Have you been to see a doctor about this? It could be that you have a hormone imbalance that is to blame for the missing period.

  • Nana

    Hey I haven’t had my period since October 4 2014 I took like 5 pregnancy test they all came back negative I been having ligh brown spotting just for one day I really don’t feel like I’m pregnant at all some time I feel dizzy or light headed moddy but that’s all can you please help me

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    There are many reasons your period can go missing in addition to pregnancy. A condition like PCOS can cause this as can menopause. You might want to go and visit your doctor to see if they can help you figure out what is going on.

  • Sam

    I just had my period about two weeks ago. And i had protected sex about a month ago. But now i’m having terrible cramps with brown spotting where I have to wear a panty liner. I’ve been spotting for about 3 days and then today i noticed a red flow when i peed. I also noticed some small tissue like substances in the toilet once i peed. I took a pregnancy test and it turned out negative. Did i test to early? I really hope I’m not pregnant because I’m to young. Do you know what this could be? I feel like sometimes i can be a hypochondriac and assume the worst so some feedback would be great!

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    What you could be experiencing is ovulation bleeding, which happens from time to time for some women. If you keep spotting a visit to your doctor to ease your mind might be in order.

  • Shantae270

    I want to know if I may be pregnant. My period is super weird. I have been having weird periods lately. I had unprotected sex in February this year, and my period was due March 7 2015. I spotted 3 days before it came on, but never fully came on. Now, after sex I spot. Been cramping a lil, like my period is coming on, but nothing. My breasts arent sore at all, but I have been feeling nauseous alot. Been craving spinach, and I got sick like I had a stomach virus or something. I don’t know what it could be, or if I am pregnant. Someone help me.

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    Have you taken a pregnancy test? And have you seen a doctor to make sure there is nothing, non-pregnancy related, going on with your system?

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