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Can Spotting Occur During Conception?

It is important to understand, first, what we are talking about by “during conception.” If we mean during the act of sexual intercourse, spotting could of course occur, just as it could any other time. However, there is a more specific type of spotting that can occur as a result of conception. This type of spotting, known as “implantation bleeding” occurs some time after the actual act of conception.

This type of spotting during conception occurs when the fertilized egg is implanted into the uterus. There is a certain type of a tissue, known as a trophoblast, that develops from the fertilized egg. Trophoblast surrounds the fertilized egg. Trophoblast is the tissue that attaches the egg to the inside of the uterus. Trophoblast actually “eats” its way into the uterus, and serves also to pull the egg toward the inside of the lining of the uterus, known as the endometrium. Trophoblast even goes so far as to “invade” the blood vessels of the mother, and cause blood to be diverted to the egg that has been fertilized. It is here that the trophoblast can cause this type of conception spotting.

This spotting that occurs during conception will occur in somewhere around half of all women. It generally happens right about 7 to 10 days after the act of conception occurs. In some cases, implantation bleeding can be mistaken for an early onset of a period. Implantation bleeding is generally pinkish to brown in color. This type of spotting is generally scanty and spotty. It will normally follow a pattern similar to a period.

In some cases, this spotting may be accompanied by cramps or an increase in bleeding. This can be a cause for a concern. Heavy bleeding, in particular, can be a sign of any number of problems. If you experience heavy bleeding along with implantation bleeding, or after implantation bleeding, you should contact your health care provider. This can indicate that there has been a miscarriage, or it can indicate some other sort of problem with pregnancy.


Last modified: February 10, 2013


The information provided here should not be considered medical advice. It is based on the average experience of women trying to conceive and may not be what you may be experiencing. It's not meant to be a replacement for any advice you may receive from your doctor. If you have any concerns about your cycle or our ability to get pregnant, we advise you to contact your doctor.