According to the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM), recurrent pregnancy loss is defined as having two or more consecutive pregnancy losses, specifically clinically recognized pregnancies that involuntarily end before 20 weeks or about five months. Clinically recognized pregnancies are those that have been clinically confirmed via ultrasound or through an examination of the tissue after a pregnancy loss.
In most cases, pregnancy loss occurs as a result of genetic or chromosomal abnormalities, including abnormalities in the egg, the sperm, or the embryo. In fact, about 30-50% of pregnancies end in the first 12 weeks, and often, women don’t even realize they’ve been pregnant. Aside from chromosomal and genetic issues, other common causes of recurrent pregnancy loss include:
First, Dr. Tureanu takes a thorough personal and family medical history, which should be as detailed as possible to help identify potential causes or risk factors for miscarriage. Next, he performs a physical exam and pelvic exam, followed by other tests and exams to examine the structure of your uterus. You might have ultrasounds, CT scans, X-rays, MRIs, or other diagnostic imaging studies to provide detailed information about your uterus and its structure, and to diagnose other causes like uterine fibroids.
Hysteroscopy is also helpful for examining the interior of the uterus. In this exam, a special scope equipped with a tiny camera is inserted into the uterus and images are transmitted back to a monitor for viewing. And of course, blood tests are performed to check for antibodies, hormone levels, and other factors that can interfere with pregnancy.
Treatment for recurrent pregnancy loss is based on the underlying cause of the loss. If you or your partner have a genetic abnormality, Dr. Tureanu may recommend genetic counseling to assess your risks and determine the potential impact on a future pregnancy. Medications can be useful in addressing clotting problems or other underlying medications, or surgical procedures to repair defects in the uterus. When the underlying cause of recurrent pregnancy loss is unknown, Dr. Tureanu will use his experience as an obstetrician and a reproductive endocrinologist to develop a treatment plan that’s optimized for your needs.