Normal pregnancy and childbirth are known to be associated with marked changes in the coagulation and fibrinolytic systems. Generally, enhancement of clotting activity persists to prevent the risk of major hemorrhage. Hemostatic problems, either associated with a specific complication of pregnancy and labor or due to a hereditary or acquired bleeding diathesis or thrombophilias, present a significant cause of maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality. This article reviews hemostatic disorders in pregnancy and the peripartal period from the standpoint of the obstetrician.
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