Vaginal bleeding can occur throughout pregnancy with varied etiologies. Although history and physical examination can identify many etiologies, imaging, in particular ultrasound (US), is the backbone of current medical practice. US pregnant uterus transabdominal, US pregnant uterus transvaginal, and US duplex Doppler velocimetry are usually appropriate for the evaluation of women with painless vaginal bleeding, those with painful vaginal bleeding, and also for those with second or third trimester vaginal bleeding with suspicion of or known placenta previa, low-lying placenta, or vasa previa. US cervix transperineal may be appropriate for those with painless or painful vaginal bleeding but is usually not appropriate for second or third trimester vaginal bleeding with suspicion of or known placenta previa, low-lying placenta, or vasa previa. Because the outcome of pregnancies is unequivocally related to the specific etiology of the vaginal bleeding, knowledge of imaging results directly informs patient management to optimize the outcome for mother and fetus. The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed annually by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and revision include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer reviewed journals and the application of well-established methodologies (RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method and Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation or GRADE) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures for specific clinical scenarios. In those instances where evidence is lacking or equivocal, expert opinion may supplement the available evidence to recommend imaging or treatment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging