Recurrent or repeated miscarriages, also referred to as recurrent pregnancy loss, is defined by The Spanish Fertility Society (SEF) as the occurrence of two or more successive pregnancies that fail to reach the 20th week of gestation, with a foetal weight of 500 grams or less.
Recurrent pregnancy loss may be caused by issues related to the mother or the father, the foetus, or the placenta. They include hormonal disorders, uterine problems, and chromosome alterations, which may be responsible for approximately 50% of recurrent miscarriages.
It’s a well-known fact that with age, the number and quality of a woman’s eggs decrease, with a higher risk of genetic abnormalities after the age of 35. Similarly, men over 45 or 50 may have lower quality semen, making them more prone to sperm DNA fragmentation, which can result in increased rates of miscarriage.
Besides age, there are other risk factors linked to miscarriages, such as arterial hypertension, diabetes, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and obesity, among others. Furthermore, an increasing number of cases are caused by immunological issues that make the woman’s body reject the embryo. Additionally, endocrine disorders, such as altered levels of thyroid hormones and glucose, are becoming more prevalent. Thrombophilia can cause thrombosis to form during placental formation, limiting the amount of blood the embryo receives. Antiphospholipid syndrome, a form of thrombophilia, is a leading cause of recurrent miscarriage and intrauterine growth restriction.
EMOTIONAL MANAGEMENT OF PREGNANCY LOSS
Don’t give up hope. Although it’s normal to have negative thoughts, remember that this is something that’s out of your control, and try to be kind to yourself.
Support is key when dealing with the devastation of a miscarriage. Talk to your nearest and dearest, and help them understand how they can best support you. It could be a hug, a listening ear, or just being there. Don’t underestimate the power of human connection. If you feel you need to talk to a professional, seek out counselling to help you process your emotions.
Whether it is due to a male or female factor, the repeated interruption of pregnancy, in addition to increasing the likelihood of recurrence, is a clear sign that there is a problem that needs to be studied, so when you feel you’re ready, an IVF specialist will be able to advise you on the options that are available to help you achieve your dream of parenthood.
WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS AFTER RECURRENT MISCARRIAGE?
It’s not possible to prevent every kind of miscarriage, as there’s no single cause. Treatment options that can reduce the likelihood of future miscarriages will depend on the diagnosis. A karyotype test is performed prior to any treatment to observe any chromosomal abnormalities in the couple. The examination looks at the size, shape, and number of chromosomes to determine any genetic alterations.
For couples with a genetic condition, Preimplantation Genetic Testing (PGT) is strongly recommended, as it allows only embryos that don’t carry the genetic disorder to be implanted. Diminished ovarian reserve can be addressed with fertility treatments using the woman’s own eggs, or egg donation IVF may be necessary. The chances of miscarriage using DEIVF are much lower than for a woman of advanced maternal age who is using her own eggs to try to conceive.
At OvobankID, our mission is to assist patients experiencing infertility to achieve their dreams of parenthood. For those considering an assisted reproduction technique, our frozen donor eggs provide success rates that exceed the average. If you’re interested in receiving more information, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll be happy to advise and work closely with you to find the best course of action.