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Pregnancy Discharge and Secretion: Early Sign of Pregnancy

The process of implantation

Pregnancy begins when the egg is ejected from the ovary during ovulation and then is fertilized by the sperm inside the fallopian tube. This usually happens within 12-24 hours after ovulation. The fertilized egg then travels down towards the uterus, increasing in size and cells along the way. Right after fertilization, when there is only one cell, it's called a "zygote", and as it divides it becomes first a "blastomere" until it reaches about 30 cells, and about 5 days later, shortly before implantation, it's called a "blastocyst". Only after implantation is the pregnancy hormone hCG excreted into the blood. Only when hCG is present in the blood stream can typical pregenancy symptoms like vaginal discharge appear.

When do pregnancy symptoms appear?

Small amounts of hCG, the pregnancy hormone, enter the blood stream several days after implantation, about 8-10 days after ovulation and before a missed period. Therefore, most symptoms do not typically appear until the hCG has reached sufficient levels, about 1-2 weeks after you miss your period (3-4 weeks after ovulation, or 2-3 weeks after implantation). Though these may suggest that a woman is pregnant, a positive pregnancy test is needed to confirm a pregnancy.

Vaginal secretions as sign and symptom of early pregnancy

Thick or milky white vaginal discharge or secretion in early pregnancy, usually around the time of a missed menstrual period, is often among the first typical early pregnancy symptoms.  Women commonly notice an increase in vaginal discharge, especially if an early pregnancy is likely.The other typical early pregnancy signs and symptoms are nausea and tiredness and missing a menstrual period. 

Most women are not aware that vaginal discharge, especially if it's thick and milky white, can be among the first signs and symptoms of pregnancy. This is because the changing hormones of pregnancy can stimulate the vagina to increase production of this vaginal secretion. 

Not every woman experiences this type of vaginal secretion in early pregnancy, however, so not seeing the white, milky secretion does not mean that you are not pregnant.

Thick white discharge and milky white secretion

Vaginal secretion associated with pregnancy is usually thick white or milky white, it can also be clear or slightly milky, but rarely if ever is typical pregnancy secretion red or yellow. It is rarely associated with an infection, especially if it does not smell. Read HERE MORE about this vaginal dicharge and what other causes it could have. 

Vaginal secretion as Sign of Ovulation and Fertility

Vaginal secrtion can also be observed as an indicator of ovulation. Leading up to ovulation, cervical mucus becomes rubbery in texture and will stretch between two fingers. This is known as egg-white cervical mucus or EWCM. The thick, sticky nature of this fertile cervical mucus holds onto semen and helps sperm travel safely through the vagina to the egg.