We examined the effects of vaginal bleeding during pregnancy on preterm and small-for-gestational-age (SGA) births using data from the 1988 US National Maternal and Infant Health Survey. We examined the severity of vaginal bleeding and separated the preterm births into subsets by the degree of prematurity (< 32, 32-33, 34-36 weeks' gestation). We also evaluated associations stratified by race. Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that vaginal bleeding was associated with an increased risk of preterm birth, with a more pronounced elevated risk for preterm birth before 34 weeks' gestation and a notably stronger association for more severe bleeding that occurred in both the first and the second half of pregnancy. Odds ratios, but not risk differences, for birth before 34 weeks' gestation were greater for white women with vaginal bleeding than for black women. There was no association between vaginal bleeding during pregnancy and SGA births.