Miscarriage Following Successful Infertility Treatment

Miscarriage is difficult under any circumstance, however for the woman who has undergone round after round of infertility treatment and has finally been told she is pregnant, a miscarriage can be an even greater loss. Many times the pregnancy will end within the first twenty weeks of pregnancy, and the cause is often unexplained, although it is attributed to chromosomal abnormalities-something is not right with the baby's chromosomes. Scientists believe that as many as 50-75% of all pregnancies end in a miscarriage, but because they occur shortly after implantation, causing bleeding around the expected time of the period, the woman is never even aware she is pregnant. In pregnancies which are fully recognized, as many as 10-25% end in miscarriage.

Possible Reasons for Miscarriage

Other than chromosomal abnormalities, a miscarriage can be caused by hormonal problems, an infection in the mother's system, or maternal health problems. Lifestyle choices can contribute to miscarriages, such as smoking, drinking, prescription or illegal drug use, poor nutrition, exposure to toxic substances, or even excessive caffeine consumption. Even though these lifestyle choices could possibly contribute to a miscarriage, it's important that women not blame themselves for their miscarriage simply because they had one too many cups of coffee on any given day.

Because the reasons for miscarriage are so varied and so often unable to be determined, it does no good to feel guilty, and believe it is something you did. Maternal age or a trauma to the expectant mother can cause miscarriage, but trauma which leads to miscarriage is very rare. Many times the implantation of the egg into the uterine lining simply doesn't occur as it should, and there is absolutely nothing anybody could have done to prevent the subsequent miscarriage. What doctors do know is that having sex, exercising or working outside the home are not causes of miscarriage.

What are Your Overall Chances of Having a Miscarriage?

Generally speaking, the chances of an average, healthy woman having a miscarriage is approximately 10-25%, although the risk increases with the woman's age. Woman between the ages of 35 and 45 have a 20-35% chance of miscarriage, while women over 45 have a 50% chance of having a miscarriage. If you have had one miscarriage and are wondering if this means you will have more, most women who have suffered a miscarriage have only a slightly elevated risk of having a second one.

Miscarriage Warning Signs

The precursor to a miscarriage often includes mild to severe back pain which is worse than your normal menstrual back pain, very painful contractions, brown or bright red bleeding, then tissue with clot-like material which passes from your vagina. When the embryo has been totally emptied from the uterus, it is known as a completed miscarriage, and can be confirmed by ultrasound.

Special Significance

For the woman who has spent possibly years of heartbreak trying to conceive, becoming pregnant brings special excitement and happiness, therefore a miscarriage can be completely devastating. The woman who has experienced infertility, and may already be wondering whether or not she will ever be a mother can be dealt an additional blow when a miscarriage occurs. She is already fully aware that becoming pregnant again will be as difficult-or more so-than it was the first time around, therefore the miscarriage can bring on depression, extreme sadness and an overwhelming sense of frustration, wondering why this is happening. The woman who has struggled with infertility may already be emotionally and physically exhausted from undergoing fertility treatments, or may be unsure if she and her partner can afford yet one more try. For all these reasons, a miscarriage for a woman who has undergone fertility treatments has special significance and extended repercussions. Ensuring that you have a close friend or relative you can talk to regarding your miscarriage can make a world of difference in your overall emotional health, so don't try to handle this on your own.

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