It is the vaginal discharge for the first fortnight during puerperium, which originates from the body of uterus, cervix and vagina, it has got a peculiar offensive fishy smell, its reaction is alkaline earlier and becomes acidic in the end, depending upon the colour of discharge it is named as 1. Lochia Rubra (red)- 1-4 days 2. Lochia Serosa (yellowish or pale or pale brownish)- 5-9 days, 3. Lochia Alba (pale white) -10-15days.
Lochia rubra consists of blood, shreds of fetal membrane, decidua, vernix caseona, lanugo and meconium
Lochia serosa consists of less RBC but more leucocytes, wound exudates, mucus from cervix and micro organisms (staph. and strepto.), this presence of bacteria is not pathognomic unless associated with clinical signs of sepsis.
Lochia alba contains decidual cells, leucocytes, mucus, cholestral crystals, fatty and granular epithelial cells and microorganisms.
The average amount of discharge for first 6-7 days is around 200-250ml, normal duration is upto 3 weeks, lochia rubra may persists in women for more time, who get up from bed for first time in later periods, the discharge may vary – scanty in premature labour or excessive in twin delivary or hydroamnios.
Clinical importance of lochial discharge:- Read Here
Image source: steadyhealth.com