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Testing for recurrent miscarriages

Vicken Sahakian
12 Dec 2019

As unfortunate and heartbreaking as miscarriages are, they’re a fairly common experience for couples attempting to conceive. Many women who are of fertile age will suffer a miscarriage, which is the loss of a pregnancy within the first three months

However, recurrent miscarriages defined as having two or more miscarriages and are much less common. If a woman has experienced three or more miscarriages, it’s time to consider fertility testing in order to determine what is causing your losses. 

Your fertility clinic can provide you with a range of recurrent miscarriage tests to find out what’s causing pregnancy loss. By undergoing testing, your fertility doctor can recommend an appropriate treatment plan that allows you to overcome this devastating experience, achieve a successful pregnancy and bring your new family member to life. 

Types of recurrent miscarriage tests 

Your fertility doctor will indicate which recurrent miscarriage tests will be most effective for your unique situation. Let’s cover some of the possible testing you may undergo, and what to expect. 

Blood tests

Blood tests for recurrent miscarriages can provide your fertility doctors with valuable information when it comes to determining the cause of miscarriage. By performing a blood test, your fertility doctor can see into your levels of proteins, progesterone, and thyroid hormones that play a critical role in maintaining a healthy pregnancy. 

Other diseases and medical conditions that can increase the risk of a miscarriage can be diagnosed through blood testing include pelvic inflammatory disease, antiphospholipid syndrome, and sexually transmitted diseases.

Genetic Screening (PGS/PGT-A)

The majority of miscarriages are caused by chromosomal abnormalities, or the irregular number or placement of chromosomes in the embryos. Most abnormalities are simply the result of chance. However, in some instances, the mother or father has genetic variations that cause the sperm or egg to have the wrong number of chromosomes. If a woman has suffered from recurrent miscarriages, it’s worth performing genetic screening (PGS/PGT-A) to determine if any genetic variations are present.

Additionally, PGS/PGT-A can also help your fertility doctor select the strongest, healthiest embryo(s) to implant into the uterus to increase your chances of a successful pregnancy. This method of testing is often performed alongside in vitro fertilization (IVF) and can allow couples experiencing different forms of infertility to bring their baby into the world. 

Ultrasound

An ultrasound is a non-invasive procedure that uses sound waves to create images of the structures and organs of the body. A transvaginal ultrasound is often performed when testing for the cause of recurrent miscarriage, which allows your fertility doctor to evaluate the uterus and look for polyps, fibroids, uterine growths, and ovarian or endometrial problems that could be leading to pregnancy loss.

Because the presence of uterine abnormalities can impact your fertility, many fertility clinics can perform surgeries to remove or lessen the impact of these challenges. 

Hysterosalpingogram (HSG)

A hysterosalpingogram, or HSG, is a test fertility doctors use to evaluate the uterus and female reproductive system when looking for potential issues causing recurrent miscarriage. 

During this test, your fertility doctor will inject a dye into the uterus and perform an x-ray that provides images of the uterus and fallopian tubes. An HSG test can diagnose a misshapen uterus, determine if the fallopian tubes are open, or if there are conditions that are causing a blockage. 

For intended parents with blocked tubes, IVF can allow you to bypass the fallopian tubes and directly implant the embryo(s) into a woman’s uterus without surgery. 

Hysteroscopy

If an HSG detects fibroids, polyps, or other abnormalities, a hysteroscopy may be scheduled. During this test, a thin telescope is inserted into the uterus. This provides your fertility doctor with a more accurate image of the patient’s reproductive system. In many cases, small problems may even be repaired during the procedure. 

Endometrial Biopsy

One of the last tests that your fertility doctor may consider for recurrent miscarriage testing is an endometrial biopsy. This test can be performed in conjunction with hysteroscopy. When undergoing an endometrial biopsy, your fertility doctor will remove a small sample of endometrial tissues to test for irregularities that could make the uterus incapable of supporting a pregnancy.

Receive recurrent miscarriage testing at PFCLA 

Even amidst your challenges, there is hope for a brighter outcome. Through modern advancements of assisted reproductive technology such as in vitro fertilization, individuals experiencing recurrent miscarriages can still become pregnant and give birth to a healthy, happy baby. 

At Pacific Fertility Center Los Angeles, our doctors offer a comprehensive range of fertility treatments that can assist women who have experienced recurrent miscarriage. Send us a message at your earliest convenience to learn more about our fertility services, or call (818) 925-7875 to schedule an appointment. We serve patients in Los Angeles, Glendale, and San Fernando Valley.

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Note: This is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Information provided is for general educational purposes only and is subject to change without notice. Speak to your doctor directly with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Any information contained herein does not replace any care plan as determined by a physician. 

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