The symptoms of miscarriage are important to detect not only because this is the most common complication of early pregnancy but also because a miscarriage requires emergency medical attention.
Before looking at the miscarriage symptoms let us see what it is that causes a miscarriage to occur. When a miscarriage or a spontaneous abortion (as it is known in medical parlance) occurs this means that the fetus or the embryo is unviable or incapable of surviving or growing for any of a number of different reasons.
The symptoms of miscarriage are important to look for if any of the following risks of a miscarriage are seen to exist:
Medical conditions such as poorly controlled thyroid disease or diabetes could raise risk of having a miscarriage.
Gynecological conditions such as cervical insufficiency, structural abnormalities of the uterus, fibroids, endometriosis, and the presence of cysts or tumors and so on increase the risk of miscarriages.
Lifestyle factors such as obesity, smoking, substance abuse, certain medications and age (over 35 years of age) may also increase chances of a woman experiencing miscarriage symptoms.
Additionally other reasons for miscarriages could be the failure of the embryo to implant successfully in the wall of the uterus which would make this a viable pregnancy. Chromosomal and other abnormalities in the fetus can also cause the pregnancy to abort spontaneously.
The signs and symptoms of miscarriage
Bleeding is usually among the first signs of a miscarriage and is termed as a threatened abortion. However, not all instances of bleeding result in a miscarriage. It is estimated that only about half the number of women who experience bleeding during pregnancy will go on to have a miscarriage.
In cases where there is bleeding and the cervix is dilated there are chances of a miscarriage occurring. However if miscarriage symptoms observed include the membranes around the fetus also being broken, then it can be determined that the miscarriage is imminent and unavoidable.
The bleeding can vary according to the stage of the pregnancy. The bleeding could last for hours or days.
Passing of tissue
Up to 6 weeks only small clots may appear however between 6 and 13 weeks gestation, larger clots as large as 5 cm could be among the miscarriage symptoms because tissue is also passed out of the vagina.
The blood and other tissue that is passed along with it, is important to examine to see whether this is fetal tissue or other material that has been passed. In a lot of cases the fetus may have passed along with blood but the placenta would have been retained resulting in an incomplete abortion.
Abdominal cramping and pain is among the other major symptoms of miscarriage. It could feel much like the monthly cramps that a woman experiences during or before her period. However in some cases the cramping could be more severe and may resemble labor pains.
However it must be remembered that all abdominal cramping or pain are not miscarriage symptoms because in a lot of cases, this could merely be the sign of the body stretching and expanding to accommodate the growing baby.