Maternal-Fetal Circulation with Placental Abruption

The sagittal view of a pregnant female showing the maternal-fetal circulation and the mechanism of a placental abruption. The maternal-fetal circulation encompasses the uterine arteries supplying oxygen from the maternal blood to the uterus and carbon dioxide traveling from the fetus via the umbilical cord across the placenta and into the uterine veins. The placenta is also where oxygen from the maternal blood transfers to the fetal circulation and encompasses umbilical vessels, chorionic villi, and the maternal artery. A placental abruption occurs when the placenta separates from the wall of the uterus, cutting off blood supply to the fetus and causing oxygen deprivation.