What are its symptoms and what are its causes?

Data from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists shows that approximately 15% of pregnancies end this way…the reason? Certain factors affect the health of the fetus and prevent its development from continuing. We’ll tell you about the most common ones and what you can do to prevent miscarriage.

What is abortion?

Spontaneous abortion refers to the loss of a pregnancy due to unintended causes, according to Dr. Jorge Tirado Chavez, a gynecologist at ngeles Pedregal Hospital.

For this to be taken into account, the termination of pregnancy must have taken place before the 20th week or when the fetus weighs less than 500 grams (otherwise, it is called premature delivery).

Causing factors may be changes in the health of the unborn child or the mother; Find out why they happen and the signs to keep in mind during any pregnancy to avoid this type of situation.

miscarriage symptoms

Ortrud Lindemann and Adriana Ortemberg state in their book Pregnancy and Natural Childbirth that the threat of miscarriage is a sign that the pregnancy is not going well; Here’s how it manifests:

Vaginal bleeding: should be heavy for 24 hours, followed by light bleeding that continues for three or more days.

Abdominal pain: severe cramping in the lower abdomen or back that can last up to 24 hours.

,Most risks do not turn into a miscarriage because when they are treated in a timely manner and the woman is comfortable during pregnancy, the risk of losing her baby is greatly reduced.says gynecologist Cecilia Enriquez Miranda of Satellite Medical Group.

In the United States, the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation document on spontaneous abortion states that when the above symptoms are experienced, the woman should seek immediate medical attention; If the cervix is ​​dilated, it is because the spontaneous abortion is near or because it has already been performed without the individual noticing – this stands out because brown clots appear with the bleeding.

,If the doctor is not used and the remains are not removed, an infection may occur which, if left untreated, can lead to infertility.Enriquez insisted.

If the pregnancy was terminated without dilation, drugs are used to open the cervix. Hardening and vacuum suction are used to remove debris.

because of an abortion

The factors causing threats of miscarriage are diverse and although nothing can be done to combat them, they lead to the termination of pregnancy. Those that appear most often are:

genetic changes in the fetus

Enriquez indicates that when the product has chromosomal abnormalities (as in the case of trisomy 21, known as Down syndrome), the pregnancy is usually terminated because nature itself knows that no proper development will occur. is produced. East.

The University of Maryland Medical Center in the United States, in its Pregnancy Health Guide section, establishes that between 50 and 60% of spontaneous abortions occur for this reason, and that they generally occur before the 10th week of gestation.

woman’s age

In the document Pregnancy First Trimester, experts from Hackensack University Medical Center in the United States claim that half of pregnancies in women over 40 end in spontaneous abortion.

Enriquez agrees, adding that those who get pregnant after age 35 (the first time) have a higher risk of having it because they have conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure, as well as babies with birth defects. congenital. are more likely to conceive.

infection during pregnancy

Gynecologist Jorge Tirado explains that some of these diseases can lead to fetal death if transmitted to the mother during pregnancy.

Rubella and cytomegalovirus are the two most common viral diseases that cause spontaneous abortion, while bacteria are chlamydia, herpes, mycoplasma or toxoplasmosis.


,Women with pre-existing diabetes who are not properly monitored before and during the first weeks of pregnancy are three to four times more likely to experience complications (including miscarriage).says the American Diabetes Association in its article Diabetes during Pregnancy.

This is because excess sugar in the mother’s blood crosses the placenta and travels to the fetus, which can cause birth defects. However, studies show that controlling said glucose concentrations almost completely eliminates the risk.

uterine malformations

Some women may have congenital abnormalities of the uterus that prevent the pregnancy from progressing well. One of the most common cases is that it has internal partitions, thus forming cavities of different sizes.

,If an embryo is implanted in one of them, it is possible that there is a risk of miscarriage, because the embryo does not have enough room to develop.says Tirado Chavez.

While previously the incidence of this alteration was lower, it is estimated today that 10 to 15% of women suffer from it.

cervical incompetence

This condition occurs when the cervix does not have enough strength to support the pregnancy. In the article Critical analysis of the management of cervical incompetence, doctors Victor Miranda and Jorge Carvajal, members of the Chilean Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology, confirm that it is the cause of spontaneous abortion in the second trimester of pregnancy.

Tirado Chavez agrees and says the main predisposition to the condition is induced abortion – just one is enough to increase the risk of it occurring.

For his part, ABC Medicus gynecologist Francisco Vergara says other common uterine disorders that can lead to these miscarriages are adhesions, fibroids, adenomyosis, and endometriosis.

hormonal changes

,Inadequate levels of progesterone can end the life of the unborn child“says gynecologist Enriquez. Low levels of this substance are caused by a disorder in its production, responsible for the corpus luteum present inside the ovaries. About 4% of miscarriages are related to this problem.

During a normal pregnancy, the production of this hormone should increase, as it is responsible for helping the uterus to expand properly (among many other functions).

blood incompatibility

According to Lindemann and Ortemberg, this occurs when the mother is Rh negative and the fetus is Rh positive; This condition poses a risk of miscarriage because the mother’s immune system can produce antibodies to “defend” itself against fetal blood.

In specialist-supervised pregnancies, injecting the woman with a substance called anti-D immunoglobulin (or antihemolytic serum) to prevent the formation of these antibodies solves the problem. But when this is not known, there is a high risk that the fetus will not survive.

external factors

Regarding radiation, Dr. Jorge Tirado explains that if the woman received treatment before becoming pregnant, it is likely that the remains of her body would cause malformations in the fetus that would eventually hinder its development; Chemotherapy, on the other hand, is harmful depending on the type of cancer being treated, as some are favorable to pregnancy and others are not.

Lindemann and Ortemberg warn that taking antibiotics or using tobacco, drugs or alcohol during this stage also increases the risk of spontaneous abortion because they prevent the placenta from working properly and cause babies to experience congenital changes. increase the risk of. ,

how to prevent miscarriage

There are many ways to prevent miscarriages. ,It is above all a question of planning a pregnancy in collaboration with a gynecologist so that three months in advance, the woman’s body is ready to live in the best possible conditions.assures gynecologist Cecilia Enriquez.

Taking folic acid supplements, along with eating a balanced diet and eliminating bad habits (like drinking coffee, smoking, or sleeping less) are essential steps to reduce the risk of complications.

In addition, this remedy will help control conditions such as diabetes or blood incompatibility, so that if the expectant mother also suffers from it, it is possible to eliminate the risk of miscarriage.

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