Every year, millions of women become pregnant — and about one-quarter of those pregnancies end in miscarriage. Although having a miscarriage can be a devastating experience, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) notes that, following miscarriage, most women go on to have successful pregnancies.
For women who have miscarriages, prompt medical treatment is important to address or prevent possible underlying issues, like infections. Knowing the signs of miscarriage helps women get treatment as soon as possible.
As a leading OB/GYN practice in Phoenix, Arizona, Desert Star Family Planning helps women understand the cause of miscarriage and recover following pregnancy loss. In this post, DeShawn Taylor, MD, MSc, FACOG, reviews some possible warning signs of miscarriage so you can seek medical treatment immediately.
1. Belly cramps
While mild cramping isn’t uncommon during the early stages of pregnancy, in some cases, it can be a sign of a miscarriage, especially if cramps are severe, become worse over time, or are accompanied by vaginal bleeding.
2. Vaginal bleeding
A little occasional spotting is also relatively common during the very early stages of pregnancy. However, if bleeding is heavy or increasing, it could signify a miscarriage. It’s essential to report any vaginal bleeding to our office so we can decide if you need to be evaluated.
3. Passing clots or tissue
Some miscarriages involve passing clots or fetal tissue. This tissue may look pinkish or grayish and may or may not be accompanied by bleeding or cramps. If you pass any tissue, call the office immediately.
4. Severe back or pelvic pain or heaviness
Back pain is common during pregnancy, but some instances may be associated with miscarriage. Specifically, if you have persistent or worsening back pain, pain in the pelvic region, or pain accompanied by increasing pressure or bleeding, it could be a sign of a miscarriage.
5. Loss of fetal movement
Fetal movement isn’t noticeable until about 16 weeks after gestation or later. A sudden decrease or cessation of fetal movement during the later stages of pregnancy could be a sign of miscarriage.
If you suspect a miscarriage
Many women feel guilty after miscarriage, worrying that pregnancy loss is “their fault.” Most miscarriages happen because of fetal development problems — specifically, chromosome abnormalities — which have nothing to do with maternal health or activity.
If you think you may be experiencing or have experienced a miscarriage, prompt medical treatment is essential. Dr. Taylor performs a physical exam along with lab tests or ultrasound to confirm pregnancy loss first, then recommends treatment to help you recover physically and emotionally.
To learn more, call 480-447-8857 or book an appointment online with Dr. Taylor and the Desert Star Family Planning team today.