- Rupture of membranes
Rupture of membranes (ROM) or amniorrhexis is a term used during pregnancy to describe a rupture of the amniotic sac. Normally, or "spontaneously", it occurs at full term at the onset of, or during, labor. This is colloquially known as "breaking water." A premature rupture of membranes (PROM) is a rupture that occurs prior to the onset of labor.
When the amniotic sac breaks or ruptures, production of the hormone prostaglandin increases, speeding up contractions.
- SROM = spontaneous rupture of membranes. SROM ("the waters go") is when the membranes rupture at full term. The rupture is usually at the bottom of the uterus, over the cervix, causing a gush of fluid. This gush may be quite small (such as 50ml), or it can be significantly large (200-300ml) depending upon amount of fluid in the amniotic sac, and to what extent the fetal head is plugging the hole and retaining fluid in the sac.
- PROM = prelabor or premature rupture of membranes
- PPROM = preterm, premature rupture of membranes
- AROM = artificial rupture of membranes. AROM can be used for labor induction.
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