Fetal Membranes, Premature Rupture: Spontaneous tearing of the membranes surrounding the FETUS any time before the onset of OBSTETRIC LABOR. Preterm PROM is membrane rupture before 37 weeks of GESTATION.Extraembryonic Membranes: The thin layers of tissue that surround the developing embryo. There are four extra-embryonic membranes commonly found in VERTEBRATES, such as REPTILES; BIRDS; and MAMMALS. They are the YOLK SAC, the ALLANTOIS, the AMNION, and the CHORION. These membranes provide protection and means to transport nutrients and wastes.Amnion: The innermost membranous sac that surrounds and protects the developing embryo which is bathed in the AMNIOTIC FLUID. Amnion cells are secretory EPITHELIAL CELLS and contribute to the amniotic fluid.Chorion: The outermost extra-embryonic membrane surrounding the developing embryo. In REPTILES and BIRDS, it adheres to the shell and allows exchange of gases between the egg and its environment. In MAMMALS, the chorion evolves into the fetal contribution of the PLACENTA.Rupture: Forcible or traumatic tear or break of an organ or other soft part of the body.Obstetric Labor, Premature: Onset of OBSTETRIC LABOR before term (TERM BIRTH) but usually after the FETUS has become viable. In humans, it occurs sometime during the 29th through 38th week of PREGNANCY. TOCOLYSIS inhibits premature labor and can prevent the BIRTH of premature infants (INFANT, PREMATURE).Pregnancy: The status during which female mammals carry their developing young (EMBRYOS or FETUSES) in utero before birth, beginning from FERTILIZATION to BIRTH.Chorioamnionitis: INFLAMMATION of the placental membranes (CHORION; AMNION) and connected tissues such as fetal BLOOD VESSELS and UMBILICAL CORD. It is often associated with intrauterine ascending infections during PREGNANCY.Labor, Obstetric: The repetitive uterine contraction during childbirth which is associated with the progressive dilation of the uterine cervix (CERVIX UTERI). Successful labor results in the expulsion of the FETUS and PLACENTA. Obstetric labor can be spontaneous or induced (LABOR, INDUCED).Amniotic Fluid: A clear, yellowish liquid that envelopes the FETUS inside the sac of AMNION. In the first trimester, it is likely a transudate of maternal or fetal plasma. In the second trimester, amniotic fluid derives primarily from fetal lung and kidney. Cells or substances in this fluid can be removed for prenatal diagnostic tests (AMNIOCENTESIS).Oligohydramnios: A condition of abnormally low AMNIOTIC FLUID volume. Principal causes include malformations of fetal URINARY TRACT; FETAL GROWTH RETARDATION; GESTATIONAL HYPERTENSION; nicotine poisoning; and PROLONGED PREGNANCY.Premature Birth: CHILDBIRTH before 37 weeks of PREGNANCY (259 days from the first day of the mother's last menstrual period, or 245 days after FERTILIZATION).Placenta: A highly vascularized mammalian fetal-maternal organ and major site of transport of oxygen, nutrients, and fetal waste products. It includes a fetal portion (CHORIONIC VILLI) derived from TROPHOBLASTS and a maternal portion (DECIDUA) derived from the uterine ENDOMETRIUM. The placenta produces an array of steroid, protein and peptide hormones (PLACENTAL HORMONES).Gestational Age: The age of the conceptus, beginning from the time of FERTILIZATION. In clinical obstetrics, the gestational age is often estimated as the time from the last day of the last MENSTRUATION which is about 2 weeks before OVULATION and fertilization.Decidua: The hormone-responsive glandular layer of ENDOMETRIUM that sloughs off at each menstrual flow (decidua menstrualis) or at the termination of pregnancy. During pregnancy, the thickest part of the decidua forms the maternal portion of the PLACENTA, thus named decidua placentalis. The thin portion of the decidua covering the rest of the embryo is the decidua capsularis.Fetoscopy: Endoscopic examination, therapy or surgery of the fetus and amniotic cavity through abdominal or uterine entry.Labor Onset: The beginning of true OBSTETRIC LABOR which is characterized by the cyclic uterine contractions of increasing frequency, duration, and strength causing CERVICAL DILATATION to begin (LABOR STAGE, FIRST ).Pregnancy Outcome: Results of conception and ensuing pregnancy, including LIVE BIRTH; STILLBIRTH; SPONTANEOUS ABORTION; INDUCED ABORTION. The outcome may follow natural or artificial insemination or any of the various ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNIQUES, such as EMBRYO TRANSFER or FERTILIZATION IN VITRO.Splenic RuptureMembranes: Thin layers of tissue which cover parts of the body, separate adjacent cavities, or connect adjacent structures.Pregnancy Complications, Infectious: The co-occurrence of pregnancy and an INFECTION. The infection may precede or follow FERTILIZATION.Pregnancy Trimester, Second: The middle third of a human PREGNANCY, from the beginning of the 15th through the 28th completed week (99 to 196 days) of gestation.Aortic Rupture: The tearing or bursting of the wall along any portion of the AORTA, such as thoracic or abdominal. It may result from the rupture of an aneurysm or it may be due to TRAUMA.Infant, Newborn: An infant during the first month after birth.Abruptio Placentae: Premature separation of the normally implanted PLACENTA from the UTERUS. Signs of varying degree of severity include UTERINE BLEEDING, uterine MUSCLE HYPERTONIA, and FETAL DISTRESS or FETAL DEATH.Ureaplasma urealyticum: A species of gram-negative bacteria found in the human genitourinary tract (UROGENITAL SYSTEM), oropharynx, and anal canal. Serovars 1, 3, 6, and 14 have been reclassed into a separate species UREAPLASMA parvum.Cell Membrane: The lipid- and protein-containing, selectively permeable membrane that surrounds the cytoplasm in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.Membrane Lipids: Lipids, predominantly phospholipids, cholesterol and small amounts of glycolipids found in membranes including cellular and intracellular membranes. These lipids may be arranged in bilayers in the membranes with integral proteins between the layers and peripheral proteins attached to the outside. Membrane lipids are required for active transport, several enzymatic activities and membrane formation.Heart Rupture: Disease-related laceration or tearing of tissues of the heart, including the free-wall MYOCARDIUM; HEART SEPTUM; PAPILLARY MUSCLES; CHORDAE TENDINEAE; and any of the HEART VALVES. Pathological rupture usually results from myocardial infarction (HEART RUPTURE, POST-INFARCTION).Intracellular Membranes: Thin structures that encapsulate subcellular structures or ORGANELLES in EUKARYOTIC CELLS. They include a variety of membranes associated with the CELL NUCLEUS; the MITOCHONDRIA; the GOLGI APPARATUS; the ENDOPLASMIC RETICULUM; LYSOSOMES; PLASTIDS; and VACUOLES.Infant, Premature: A human infant born before 37 weeks of GESTATION.Pregnancy Complications: Conditions or pathological processes associated with pregnancy. They can occur during or after pregnancy, and range from minor discomforts to serious diseases that require medical interventions. They include diseases in pregnant females, and pregnancies in females with diseases.Amniocentesis: Percutaneous transabdominal puncture of the uterus during pregnancy to obtain amniotic fluid. It is commonly used for fetal karyotype determination in order to diagnose abnormal fetal conditions.Uterine Rupture: A complete separation or tear in the wall of the UTERUS with or without expulsion of the FETUS. It may be due to injuries, multiple pregnancies, large fetus, previous scarring, or obstruction.Cesarean Section: Extraction of the FETUS by means of abdominal HYSTEROTOMY.Cervix Uteri: The neck portion of the UTERUS between the lower isthmus and the VAGINA forming the cervical canal.Membrane Potentials: The voltage differences across a membrane. For cellular membranes they are computed by subtracting the voltage measured outside the membrane from the voltage measured inside the membrane. They result from differences of inside versus outside concentration of potassium, sodium, chloride, and other ions across cells' or ORGANELLES membranes. For excitable cells, the resting membrane potentials range between -30 and -100 millivolts. Physical, chemical, or electrical stimuli can make a membrane potential more negative (hyperpolarization), or less negative (depolarization).Matrix Metalloproteinase 8: A member of the MATRIX METALLOPROTEINASES that cleaves triple-helical COLLAGEN types I, II, and III.Membranes, Artificial: Artificially produced membranes, such as semipermeable membranes used in artificial kidney dialysis (RENAL DIALYSIS), monomolecular and bimolecular membranes used as models to simulate biological CELL MEMBRANES. These membranes are also used in the process of GUIDED TISSUE REGENERATION.Pregnancy Reduction, Multifetal: Selective abortion of one or more embryos or fetuses in a multiple gestation pregnancy. The usual goal is to improve the outcome for the remaining embryos or fetuses.Heart Rupture, Post-Infarction: Laceration or tearing of cardiac tissues appearing after MYOCARDIAL INFARCTION.Membrane Fluidity: The motion of phospholipid molecules within the lipid bilayer, dependent on the classes of phospholipids present, their fatty acid composition and degree of unsaturation of the acyl chains, the cholesterol concentration, and temperature.Erythrocyte Membrane: The semi-permeable outer structure of a red blood cell. It is known as a red cell 'ghost' after HEMOLYSIS.Parturition: The process of giving birth to one or more offspring.Trophoblasts: Cells lining the outside of the BLASTOCYST. After binding to the ENDOMETRIUM, trophoblasts develop into two distinct layers, an inner layer of mononuclear cytotrophoblasts and an outer layer of continuous multinuclear cytoplasm, the syncytiotrophoblasts, which form the early fetal-maternal interface (PLACENTA).Myometrium: The smooth muscle coat of the uterus, which forms the main mass of the organ.Tissue Adhesives: Substances used to cause adherence of tissue to tissue or tissue to non-tissue surfaces, as for prostheses.Infant, Premature, DiseasesUltrasonography, Prenatal: The visualization of tissues during pregnancy through recording of the echoes of ultrasonic waves directed into the body. The procedure may be applied with reference to the mother or the fetus and with reference to organs or the detection of maternal or fetal disease.Delivery, Obstetric: Delivery of the FETUS and PLACENTA under the care of an obstetrician or a health worker. Obstetric deliveries may involve physical, psychological, medical, or surgical interventions.Vagina: The genital canal in the female, extending from the UTERUS to the VULVA. (Stedman, 25th ed)Cell Membrane Permeability: A quality of cell membranes which permits the passage of solvents and solutes into and out of cells.Ureaplasma Infections: Infections with bacteria of the genus UREAPLASMA.Placenta, Retained: A placenta that fails to be expelled after BIRTH of the FETUS. A PLACENTA is retained when the UTERUS fails to contract after the delivery of its content, or when the placenta is abnormally attached to the MYOMETRIUM.Basement Membrane: A darkly stained mat-like EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX (ECM) that separates cell layers, such as EPITHELIUM from ENDOTHELIUM or a layer of CONNECTIVE TISSUE. The ECM layer that supports an overlying EPITHELIUM or ENDOTHELIUM is called basal lamina. Basement membrane (BM) can be formed by the fusion of either two adjacent basal laminae or a basal lamina with an adjacent reticular lamina of connective tissue. BM, composed mainly of TYPE IV COLLAGEN; glycoprotein LAMININ; and PROTEOGLYCAN, provides barriers as well as channels between interacting cell layers.Umbilical Cord: The flexible rope-like structure that connects a developing FETUS to the PLACENTA in mammals. The cord contains blood vessels which carry oxygen and nutrients from the mother to the fetus and waste products away from the fetus.Term Birth: CHILDBIRTH at the end of a normal duration of PREGNANCY, between 37 to 40 weeks of gestation or about 280 days from the first day of the mother's last menstrual period.Labor, Induced: Artificially induced UTERINE CONTRACTION. Generally, LABOR, OBSTETRIC is induced with the intent to cause delivery of the fetus and termination of pregnancy.Pregnancy, Animal: The process of bearing developing young (EMBRYOS or FETUSES) in utero in non-human mammals, beginning from FERTILIZATION to BIRTH.Infant, Low Birth Weight: An infant having a birth weight of 2500 gm. (5.5 lb.) or less but INFANT, VERY LOW BIRTH WEIGHT is available for infants having a birth weight of 1500 grams (3.3 lb.) or less.Matrix Metalloproteinase 9: An endopeptidase that is structurally similar to MATRIX METALLOPROTEINASE 2. It degrades GELATIN types I and V; COLLAGEN TYPE IV; and COLLAGEN TYPE V.Pregnancy Trimester, Third: The last third of a human PREGNANCY, from the beginning of the 29th through the 42nd completed week (197 to 294 days) of gestation.Ultrasonography, Doppler, Pulsed: Ultrasonography applying the Doppler effect, with velocity detection combined with range discrimination. Short bursts of ultrasound are transmitted at regular intervals and the echoes are demodulated as they return.Culture Techniques: Methods of maintaining or growing biological materials in controlled laboratory conditions. These include the cultures of CELLS; TISSUES; organs; or embryo in vitro. Both animal and plant tissues may be cultured by a variety of methods. Cultures may derive from normal or abnormal tissues, and consist of a single cell type or mixed cell types.Microscopy, Electron: Microscopy using an electron beam, instead of light, to visualize the sample, thereby allowing much greater magnification. The interactions of ELECTRONS with specimens are used to provide information about the fine structure of that specimen. In TRANSMISSION ELECTRON MICROSCOPY the reactions of the electrons that are transmitted through the specimen are imaged. In SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY an electron beam falls at a non-normal angle on the specimen and the image is derived from the reactions occurring above the plane of the specimen.Twins: Two individuals derived from two FETUSES that were fertilized at or about the same time, developed in the UTERUS simultaneously, and born to the same mother. Twins are either monozygotic (TWINS, MONOZYGOTIC) or dizygotic (TWINS, DIZYGOTIC).Cells, Cultured: Cells propagated in vitro in special media conducive to their growth. Cultured cells are used to study developmental, morphologic, metabolic, physiologic, and genetic processes, among others.Relaxin: A water-soluble polypeptide (molecular weight approximately 8,000) extractable from the corpus luteum of pregnancy. It produces relaxation of the pubic symphysis and dilation of the uterine cervix in certain animal species. Its role in the human pregnant female is uncertain. (Dorland, 28th ed)Mycoplasma hominis: A common inhabitant of the vagina and cervix and a potential human pathogen, causing infections of the male and female reproductive tracts. It has also been associated with respiratory disease and pharyngitis. (From Dorland, 28th ed)Uterus: The hollow thick-walled muscular organ in the female PELVIS. It consists of the fundus (the body) which is the site of EMBRYO IMPLANTATION and FETAL DEVELOPMENT. Beyond the isthmus at the perineal end of fundus, is CERVIX UTERI (the neck) opening into VAGINA. Beyond the isthmi at the upper abdominal end of fundus, are the FALLOPIAN TUBES.RNA, Messenger: RNA sequences that serve as templates for protein synthesis. Bacterial mRNAs are generally primary transcripts in that they do not require post-transcriptional processing. Eukaryotic mRNA is synthesized in the nucleus and must be exported to the cytoplasm for translation. Most eukaryotic mRNAs have a sequence of polyadenylic acid at the 3' end, referred to as the poly(A) tail. The function of this tail is not known for certain, but it may play a role in the export of mature mRNA from the nucleus as well as in helping stabilize some mRNA molecules by retarding their degradation in the cytoplasm.Aneurysm, Ruptured: The tearing or bursting of the weakened wall of the aneurysmal sac, usually heralded by sudden worsening pain. The great danger of a ruptured aneurysm is the large amount of blood spilling into the surrounding tissues and cavities, causing HEMORRHAGIC SHOCK.Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Tissue Culture Techniques: A technique for maintaining or growing TISSUE in vitro, usually by DIFFUSION, perifusion, or PERFUSION. The tissue is cultured directly after removal from the host without being dispersed for cell culture.Membrane Transport Proteins: Membrane proteins whose primary function is to facilitate the transport of molecules across a biological membrane. Included in this broad category are proteins involved in active transport (BIOLOGICAL TRANSPORT, ACTIVE), facilitated transport and ION CHANNELS.Abortion, Septic: Any type of abortion, induced or spontaneous, that is associated with infection of the UTERUS and its appendages. It is characterized by FEVER, uterine tenderness, and foul discharge.Maternal Age: The age of the mother in PREGNANCY.Risk Factors: An aspect of personal behavior or lifestyle, environmental exposure, or inborn or inherited characteristic, which, on the basis of epidemiologic evidence, is known to be associated with a health-related condition considered important to prevent.Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase-1: A member of the family of TISSUE INHIBITOR OF METALLOPROTEINASES. It is a N-glycosylated protein, molecular weight 28 kD, produced by a vast range of cell types and found in a variety of tissues and body fluids. It has been shown to suppress metastasis and inhibit tumor invasion in vitro.Membrane Glycoproteins: Glycoproteins found on the membrane or surface of cells.Immunohistochemistry: Histochemical localization of immunoreactive substances using labeled antibodies as reagents.Pre-Eclampsia: A complication of PREGNANCY, characterized by a complex of symptoms including maternal HYPERTENSION and PROTEINURIA with or without pathological EDEMA. Symptoms may range between mild and severe. Pre-eclampsia usually occurs after the 20th week of gestation, but may develop before this time in the presence of trophoblastic disease.Lipid Bilayers: Layers of lipid molecules which are two molecules thick. Bilayer systems are frequently studied as models of biological membranes.Cattle: Domesticated bovine animals of the genus Bos, usually kept on a farm or ranch and used for the production of meat or dairy products or for heavy labor.Placenta Diseases: Pathological processes or abnormal functions of the PLACENTA.Connective Tissue: Tissue that supports and binds other tissues. It consists of CONNECTIVE TISSUE CELLS embedded in a large amount of EXTRACELLULAR MATRIX.Stomach Rupture: Bursting of the STOMACH.Prostaglandins: A group of compounds derived from unsaturated 20-carbon fatty acids, primarily arachidonic acid, via the cyclooxygenase pathway. They are extremely potent mediators of a diverse group of physiological processes.Tissue Inhibitor of Metalloproteinase-3: A member of the family of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases. Mutations of the gene for TIMP3 PROTEIN causes Sorsby fundus dystrophy.Retrospective Studies: Studies used to test etiologic hypotheses in which inferences about an exposure to putative causal factors are derived from data relating to characteristics of persons under study or to events or experiences in their past. The essential feature is that some of the persons under study have the disease or outcome of interest and their characteristics are compared with those of unaffected persons.Dinoprostone: The most common and most biologically active of the mammalian prostaglandins. It exhibits most biological activities characteristic of prostaglandins and has been used extensively as an oxytocic agent. The compound also displays a protective effect on the intestinal mucosa.