Miscarriage: Signs, Symptoms, Treatment, and Prevention
Miscarriages happen when a pregnant woman loses her child even as early as 12 weeks of the pregnancy. 50% of pregnancies end in the first two weeks. During pregnancy, your priority is your safety and that of your unborn child. Therefore, it becomes necessary to be on the lookout for the following signs and symptoms of miscarriages. Sometimes, women miss these signs and symptoms altogether and find out when it’s too late.
There are different kinds of miscarriages:
- Early miscarriages which are anything that happens in the first 12 to 13 weeks or pregnancy
- Late miscarriages which happen between 14 to 24 weeks. It is also called a second-trimester miscarriage. A late miscarriage is different from a stillbirth. Stillbirths happen in the third trimester.
- A threatened miscarriage is when a woman experiences symptoms such as bleeding and period-cramps for several days. However, this does not always mean a miscarriage is happening. Here, the symptoms of miscarriage can occur, but the pregnancy can be carried as normal
The signs and symptoms of a miscarriage include:
1. Vaginal bleeding
This is one of the most common signs of a miscarriage. It can be light spotting or heavy bleeding and perhaps some blood clots. In other cases, there could be a brownish discharge or bright red blood. Some pregnancies can experience bleeding in the early stages of the pregnancy because of the missed menstrual period. Such bleeding results in normal pregnancy and does not necessarily mean a miscarriage. Nevertheless, if you experience vaginal bleeding, do not hesitate to see your doctor.
2. Strong period-type cramps
This is another common sign of miscarriage. You may experience strong cramping pains similar to those during a period.
3. Discharge of fluid or tissue from the vagina
It may not be common, but it is still a symptom of miscarriage. The NHS advises pregnant women to be on the lookout for this.
4. Subsiding of symptoms of pregnancy
You may begin to notice that the symptoms of pregnancy such as breast tenderness or morning sickness are subsiding if you have been experiencing them till that point.
5. Nausea or vomiting
Besides this being a symptom of pregnancy, it is also a sign of a miscarriage.
6. Uterine contraction
7. Irregular uterine bleeding
8. True contractions
These contractions mimic those experienced during the period of childbirth. They are very painful and happen every 5-20 minutes.
9. White- pink mucus
10. Some form of weight loss
While you should be gaining because of the pregnancy.
What to do when you have bleeding during pregnancy or any unusual signs that may be related to a miscarriage?
When you begin to have any prolonged bleeding or strong abdominal pain, it is important that you call the Early Pregnancy Unit at your hospital and see your doctor as soon as possible.
Sometimes, you may discover miscarriages during the routine pregnancy ultrasound scan. Here, the nurse only finds an empty embryo sac. This is called a missed/ silent miscarriage.
Find more information about what are the common treatments for miscarriage here.
Don’t take chances with your health and that of your unborn child. Visit your doctor immediately you notice any of these symptoms. It may just make all the difference.