What is that sudden sharp shooting pain you may feel during pregnancy?


Are you in the second trimester and experiencing a sharp shooting abdominal pain that runs from your hip bone to your groin? So sharp that it feels like someone has stabbed you with a knife and you have to stop everything, gather yourself and then continue moving…

Those intense, quick, stabbing like of pains are your round ligaments stretching.

What is the “round ligament”?

There are several ligaments that surround and support your uterus, one of these is called the round ligament. This ligament connects the front part of the uterus to the area where your leg attaches to your pelvis. The round ligament normally tightens and relaxes slowly, however as your uterus and baby grow, the round ligament stretches from about 5cm when you become pregnant to about 25cm by the end, making it more likely to become strained. The pain is often reported in the 14 to 16 weeks range, and then again later in the third trimester. Any sudden movement or jolt can cause the ligament to tighten quickly, which is what causes that sharp sudden abdominal pain and makes it feel like someone is stabbing you.

What is round ligament pain?

Round ligament pain is a sharp pain or jabbing feeling often felt in the lower abdomen, groin or oblique area on one or both sides. Besides the last few weeks of pregnancy, it is considered one of the most uncomfortable symptoms even though it is totally a normal part of pregnancy. It is most often felt during the second trimester.

Our top 4 tips to coping with those sudden sharp pains:

1. Exercise

Get plenty of exercise that keeps your core muscles strong from the get go.

2. Avoid sudden movements

Change positions slowly, such as standing up, sitting down or getting in and out of bed or your car.

3. Flex your hips

Bend and flex your hips before you cough, sneeze, or laugh to avoid pulling on the ligaments.

4. Apply warmth

A heating pad or warm bath may be helpful.


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