Placenta Accreta

Placenta accreta occurs when the placenta grows too deeply into the uterine wall during pregnancy. In a normal pregnancy, the placenta will detach from the uterine wall after a woman gives birth. When placenta accreta occurs, a portion or all of the placenta remains attached.

Placenta accreta is a significant problem, and excessive blood loss, hemorrhage, or other complications may occur after the delivery.

Can doctors or a pregnant woman prevent placenta accreta?

Unfortunately, no remedies exist to prevent any of the conditions along the placenta accreta spectrum. Working in tandem with the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine in 2015, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) created a list of recommendations for women experiencing a high-risk pregnancy and the threat of placenta accreta.

Doctors designed this system of care to foster healthy gestation throughout the pregnancy and to reduce the incidence of maternal morbidity during or after a placental invasion. Recommendations included a multidisciplinary approach to care from health care professionals in areas like cardiology, gynecology, hematology, and critical care.

How do you remove placenta accreta?

In severe cases of placenta accreta, a woman’s health care team might need to perform a Cesarean section followed by a hysterectomy. A Cesarean hysterectomy may help prevent hemorrhaging and other postpartum complications.

The risk of life-threatening blood loss due to the separation of the placenta from the uterine wall may force doctors to perform a hysterectomy. Some women may require time in the intensive care unit (ICU).

What are the complications with placenta accreta?

Feeding problems

Hearing and vision problems


Hemorrhaging after delivery is the most severe complication of placenta accreta. Vaginal bleeding may cause a condition called disseminated intravascular coagulopathy, which prevents the blood from clotting normally.

Heavy bleeding may also cause lung failure or kidney failure in the mother, and women who experience this complication may require a blood transfusion after they give birth.

Placenta accreta may also cause a woman to enter labor early and result in premature birth. Bleeding that occurs during pregnancy rather than after birth may cause preterm labor. Doctors may require a Cesarean delivery in a placenta accreta emergency.

When is placenta accreta considered a medical emergency?

Given the danger of life-threatening complications from placenta accreta and the risk of maternal death, women who experience bleeding in their third trimester should seek medical help immediately, especially if they’ve had a diagnosis on the placenta accreta spectrum.

What is the placenta accreta spectrum?

Placenta accreta is diagnosed by three stages of severity based on how deeply the placenta has grown into the uterus. The first stage is placenta accreta, when the placenta grows into the lining of the uterus. The second stage is placenta increta, when the placenta reaches the wall of the uterus and grows into it.

Placenta percreta is the third stage and occurs when the placenta grows through the wall of the uterus. Sometimes, the condition may allow the placenta to expand into other organs near the uterus, such as the colon or bladder.

What is the death rate for placenta accreta?

As high as 7%

mortality rate for placenta accreta, according to a research article published by the Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, an international medical journal. The study found that most of the deaths analyzed were preventable. Common causes of death included hemorrhaging and failure to diagnose.

If you or a loved one experienced health complications or death as a result of placenta accreta, doctor negligence may have been a contributing factor. You should receive the compensation you deserve for injuries caused by medical malpractice. To discuss your case with a compassionate and knowledgeable lawyer at Birth Injury Center, contact us today for a free consultation.