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Miscarriage Information

  • Miscarriage or spontaneous abortion is the natural or accidental termination of a pregnancy at a stage where the embryo or the fetus is incapable of surviving, generally defined at a gestation of prior to 20 weeks. Miscarriages are the most common complication of pregnancy. The term "abortion" refers to any terminated pregnancy, deliberately induced or spontaneous, although in common parlance it refers specifically to active termination of pregnancy...
  • Miscarriages occur more often than most people think. About 25% of women will experience one in their lives. Up to 78% of all conceptions may fail, in most cases before the woman even knows she is pregnant. A fifth of confirmed pregnancies have some bleeding occurring in the first 20 weeks and in all 15% proceed to miscarriage.[2] After the age of 35, the risk of miscarriage increases considerably: 1 in 5 or 6. After 40, the risk increases to 1 in 3, and after 45 it is 1 in 2.

    Although a woman physically recovers from a miscarriage quickly, psychological recovery can take a long time. Women can differ a lot in this regard: some are 'over it' after a few months, others take more than a year. Still other women may feel relief or other less negative emotions.

    For the women who do go through a process of grief, it is often as if the baby had been born but died. How short a time the child in her womb has lived may not matter for the feeling of loss. From the moment a woman becomes aware that she is pregnant she can start to bond with her unborn child. When the child turns out not to be viable, dreams, fantasies and plans for the future are disturbed roughly.

    Besides the feeling of loss, a lack of understanding by others is often important. People who have not experienced a miscarriage themselves may find it hard to empathise with what has occurred and how upsetting it may be. This may lead to unrealistic expectations of the woman's recovery. The pregnancy and miscarriage are hardly mentioned anymore in conversation, often too because the subject is too painful. This can make the woman feel isolated.

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View Top Miscarriage Answers at sharecare.com

Health Blogs

After the loss, you might be stunned or shocked. You might be asking, "Why me?" You might feel guilty that you did or didn't do something to cause your pregnancy to end. You might feel cheated and angry. Or you might feel extremely sad as you come to terms with the baby that will never be. These emotions are all normal reactions to loss.
Childbearing loss evokes many emotions. You may feel buffeted and torn by confusion, relief, shame, anger, sorrow, fear, powerlessness, or despair. You may want those around you to comfort you physically and listen empathetically. Some of your friends and family may not be able to handle the loss. Others may offer platitudes such as "You'll have ... Read More »
An estimated 15 to 20 percent of known pregnancies result in miscarriage, which happens for a variety of reasons. Even though miscarriage happens frequently, it is often devastating for the would-be parents.
... Read More »

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Lee Trask
Infertility Blogger

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