Health Information and Tools > Patient Care Handouts >  Round Ligament Pain: Care Instructions

Main Content

Round Ligament Pain: Care Instructions

Location of the round ligament and areas of pain associated with it

Your Care Instructions

Round ligament pain is a common pain during pregnancy. You may feel a sharp brief pain on one or both sides of your belly. It may go down into your groin. It's usually felt for the first time during the second trimester.

This pain is a normal part of pregnancy. It will go away as your pregnancy continues or after your baby is born.

Your uterus is supported by two ligaments that go from the top and sides of the uterus to the bones of the pelvis. These are the round ligaments. As your uterus grows, these ligaments stretch and tighten with your movements. This may be the cause of the pain. You may find that certain activities seem to cause pain. If you can, avoid those activities.

Your doctor or midwife can usually diagnose round ligament pain from your symptoms and an exam. If you have bleeding or other symptoms, your doctor or midwife may also do an imaging test, such as an ultrasound. Your doctor or midwife may suggest that you take an over-the-counter pain medicine, such as acetaminophen.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

  • If certain movements seem to trigger belly pain, see if you can avoid them while you are pregnant.
  • Stay active. If your doctor says it's okay, try moderate exercise. Water exercise may be a good choice if you have belly pain. Examples are swimming and water aerobics.
  • Ask your doctor or midwife about taking acetaminophen for pain. Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.

When should you call for help?

Call your doctor or midwife now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You think you might be in labour.
  • You have new or worse pain.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or midwife if you have any problems.

Where can you learn more?

Go to

Enter R110 in the search box to learn more about "Round Ligament Pain: Care Instructions".

Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.