Causes of Recurrent Miscarriages
Miscarriages are tragic situations that are, unfortunately, much more common than most people realize. Many women who suffer a miscarriage go on to carry a pregnancy full-term. However, for some, recurrent miscarriage is a problem.
Recurrent miscarriage is defined as two or more pregnancy losses. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists report that just one percent of women suffer from repeat miscarriages. Understanding recurrent miscarriage causes can help the fertility specialists at Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine, PC customize a treatment plan that is best for each of our Omaha, NE, patients.
The most common cause of recurrent miscarriage is genetic problems. If an embryo has an abnormal number of chromosomes, it can cause the pregnancy to terminate. In most cases, chromosomal abnormalities are completely random and have no real cause. However, there are cases when one partner has a translocation, meaning that a piece of one of their chromosomes has attached to another chromosome. Translocation does not result in any noticeable symptoms, but it may cause the person’s sperm or eggs to have abnormal chromosomes, which could affect a developing embryo. Advanced age is another factor that increases the risk of chromosomal abnormalities and recurrent miscarriage.
Abnormal Hormone Levels
Abnormal hormone levels are another condition that may cause recurrent miscarriage for our Omaha patients. If hormone levels are off, the lining of the uterus may not thicken or develop sufficiently, which makes it difficult for an embryo to get the support and nourishment it needs. Some medical conditions that could cause abnormal hormone levels include thyroid disease and uncontrolled diabetes.
There are a number of physiological conditions that can contribute to recurrent miscarriage. A septate uterus is one of the most common. A septate uterus is one that is divided in two by a wall of tissues. A septate uterus makes it difficult for an embryo to thrive.
Asherman Syndrome has also been linked to recurrent miscarriage. Asherman Syndrome is a condition that may develop after uterine surgery, or after suffering a pelvic infection. Asherman Syndrome causes scar tissue to form within the uterus, which can lead to the rejection of an embryo.
Other physiological conditions that may cause recurrent miscarriage include polyps or fibroids within the uterus. These are non-cancerous growths that can make the uterus an inhospitable environment for embryos.
Certain pre-existing medical conditions can also cause recurrent miscarriage for our Omaha patients. Antiphospholipid syndrome, or APS, is an autoimmune disorder that can significantly increase the risk of recurrent miscarriage. In people who suffer from APS, the immune system mistakenly attacks substances in the body that are responsible for blood clotting. This increases the risk of miscarriage and still birth.
Another medical condition known to increase the risk of recurrent miscarriage is polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS. PCOS disrupts ovarian functions and can make it more difficult to become pregnant or to carry a pregnancy full-term.
At Heartland Center for Reproductive Medicine, PC, we offer a comprehensive range of fertility treatments to address the various causes of recurrent miscarriage. Our doctors can also help when the cause of recurrent miscarriage is unknown. If you’d like more information about our fertility treatments, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call our practice at (402) 717-4200.