When it comes to having a baby women can suffer from all sorts of problems, from infertility to miscarriages. Miscarriage cut across all walks of life and can happen for various reasons. There are a few reasons that explain the majority of the miscarriages that happen around the world.
Chromosomes of a healthy embryo contain all the information of a baby and they determine the sex of the baby. Chromosomal abnormalities occur due to nondisjunction which means that either one or both chromosomes do not separate properly during cell division in sperm and egg. Nondisjunction can result in an embryo with too many or too few chromosomes, or one that has broken pieces of chromosomes or two different chromosomes instead of one complete set. If this happens right at the beginning while fertilization, it will likely cause miscarriage. The most common chromosomal abnormality is trisomy 21 (Down’s syndrome) characterized by mental retardation and some physical features such as the short neck, small head, flat nose, small jaw, small earlobes, abnormally shaped tongues, and so on.
Maternal age also plays a major role in increasing the risk of early miscarriage. A woman between 20 and 34 years of age has only a 10% chance of getting pregnant with chromosomal problems, but after 35 it increases threefold, and by 45 years old there are 50% chances of having a baby with abnormalities thus leading towards a miscarriage. Women over the age of 40 cannot give birth safely and are advised not to induce labor until they reach at least 42 weeks gestation. So we can say, maternal age has a large influence on early miscarriages or stillbirths (loss at or after 24 weeks). In women, more than 45 years of age, the most common cause of spontaneous abortion with a viable fetus is a condition called “congenital uterine anomaly”. It includes a bicornuate uterus, a T-shaped uterus.
Abnormalities in the uterus:
When there are abnormalities in the uterine cavity such as scar tissue (Asherman’s syndrome) or fibroids which block the cervix and prevent the passage of embryo towards the uterus thus leading towards a miscarriage. Even if the baby has no obvious birth defect, parents may still worry about whether their baby will have some other problem further along in the child’s development. If you had surgery on your uterus for conditions like endometriosis or fibroids or any cesarean section then it does increase chances of early miscarriage or stillbirth.
Sometimes the contraceptive pills fail and the woman gets pregnant but sometimes, people use condoms and spermicide incorrectly and it can lead to early miscarriages as well as if the condom breaks inside the vagina during sex then also chances of early abortion increase. When this misplaced sperm enters the cervical canal due to intercourse before ovulation or during ovulation, it causes fertilization; therefore drug companies started selling morning-after pills (emergency contraception) such as Plan B to prevent such cases from early pregnancy loss. But according to research, it is not completely reliable like contraceptive pills and may cause birth defects that we do not know about yet. If you had unprotected sex recently then take a pregnancy test on time to confirm pregnancy or consult with your doctor, don’t wait for a repeated miscarriage.
Sickle cell anemia (inherited blood disorder of red blood cells) is also one of the major causes of early abortions in some women especially in the African Americans population but it cannot be passed from parents to childlike genetic disorders therefore affected mother needs prenatal care and counseling more than any other woman who has no sickle cell disease in their family tree. Genetic testing can help you learn about the risk of chromosomal abnormalities that increases the chances of miscarriage; this includes Amniocentesis, CVS ( chorionic villus sampling), Pregnancy Ultrasound, etc. if there are any problems then doctors recommend termination of pregnancy or else they can give advice on how to go forward.
So it would be not wrong to say that medical issues play a major role in early miscarriages, stillbirths, and abortions. Some conditions cannot be cured completely but you can learn ways to manage them for a regular lifestyle. Just keep all these things in mind before getting pregnant.