Recurrent Pregnancy Loss

website-pregnacy-lossRecurrent Pregnancy Loss (RPL) is a condition in which a woman has two or more miscarriages prior to reaching the 20th week of pregnancy.   These losses are categorized by the week in which they occurred. Loss of a “clinical pregnancy” is diagnosed by Fresno OB-GYN Dr. Gail Mallard-Warren using ultrasound.

In most cases, a pregnancy can be detected while performing an ultrasound as early as five or six gestational age, which is one to two weeks following a missed period. On the other hand, a “biochemical pregnancy” loss is one that has been discovered by your Fresno OB-GYN by using urine or blood hormone testing before vanishing. Biochemical losses are typically not included the diagnosis of RPL.

Causes of Recurrent Pregnancy

There are a variety of reasons why women may suffer RPL:

Genetics: Most miscarriages that occur in the first three months of the pregnancy term are the result of genetic irregularities that occur in either the fetus or the embryo. There are typically 46 chromosomes that hold the genes for normal development. Many miscarriages happen early on because either the fetus has an extra chromosome or is missing one.

As women get older, the miscarriage risk due to these genetic abnormalities increases from 10%-15% in women under the age of 35 to over 50% in women over the age of 40.

Anatomic: A difficulty with the shape of a woman’s uterus might also be a reason for pregnancy loss because having a strip of tissue inside the uterus can make the inside of it too small. Women born with a septum may experience repeated miscarriages. Fibroids tumors are common and can lead to a miscarriage if they grow into or close to the uterine cavity.

Lifestyle/Environmental Choices: Smoking and certain recreational drugs such as cocaine elevate a woman’s risk for RPL. Being overweight has also been linked with RPL and other pregnancy complications. Excessive alcohol or caffeine consumption has also been linked to RPL.

Medical Conditions: Left untreated, medical conditions such as thyroid disease or diabetes can elevate the risk for miscarriage. Irregularities of the immune or blood-clotting system can lead to RPL. 

Unexplained: In 50% of reported RPL cases, doctors cannot find the reason for the losses, but believe that the majority of these miscarriages may be due to genetic abnormalities.

Under certain circumstances, medical or surgical treatment for RPL can decrease a woman’s risk of a future miscarriage. Even after suffering three miscarriages, a woman still has a 60%-80% chance of conceiving a baby and carrying it for the full term.

If you are suffering from Recurrent Pregnancy Loss and are in need of a caring and experienced OB-GYN Fresno CA residents rely on the professional and caring staff at the office of Dr. Gail Mallard-Warren.

Don’t wait – call us today at (559) 432-4963 to schedule your appointment.

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