Is it possible for someone to have 10 or 15 miscarriages in a row?

(March 11, 2010)

Giving birth to a baby is one of the most cherished experiences in life. However, all women are not blessed with this happiness. Many women experience the joys of pregnancy but these joys are short-lived due to complications that arise during the course of the pregnancy resulting in loss of the baby. A miscarriage is the term used for the spontaneous loss of a baby within the first 20 weeks of gestation. At such a young gestation age, the little baby is unable to fend for itself and hence does not survive. Almost 20 out of every 100 pregnancies end in miscarriages due to a variety of reasons.  

Most women who experience a miscarriage go on to have normal subsequent pregnancies resulting in the birth of healthy little babies. However, it is not uncommon for a woman to experience recurrent miscarriages. The main cause of early miscarriages is genetic abnormality in the developing baby that sets in at the time of conception itself due to an extra or less chromosome contributed by a parent at the time of fertilization. This could be a fluke occurrence or it could be the result of chromosomal rearrangements in either of the parents. In such cases, in spite of there being a balanced number of chromosomes in each parent, the child may receive a chromosomal imbalance. A change in the structure of a single gene or a group of genes within a chromosome may also result in the malformation of the embryo leading to a miscarriage in due course of time. In such cases, genetic counseling and testing is recommended before trying to conceive in the future in order to reduce the heartache of a miscarriage triggered by genetic malformation. Genetic testing is also recommended if a history of genetic abnormalities runs in the family.

Hormonal imbalance is another cause of unsuccessful implantation and miscarriages. At times, the expectant mother suffers from uterine abnormalities that hamper the growth of the developing baby. The uterus may exhibit an inability to expand to accommodate the growing baby resulting in the untimely expulsion of the baby from the womb. Tumors, fibroids and scars on the uterine wall affect proper implantation and hinder the growth of the baby resulting in an inevitable loss. Medical conditions like diabetes, hypertension and hypothyroidism also increase the chances of recurrent miscarriages if not kept under control. Advanced maternal age and stress are two other common factors that affect the success of a pregnancy.  

Submitted by P T on March 11, 2010 at 11:05

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