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Miscarriage - What Causes It?

Dr. Sonal Kumar 91% (496 ratings)
fellow in Obstetric Medicine , MS - Obstetrics and Gynaecology, FMAS, DMAS, MBBS
Gynaecologist,  •  10 years experience
Miscarriage - What Causes It?

A miscarriage can have adverse effects on both physical and emotional health. The impact of one such event can last for a very long time and harm your social behavior and thus, relationships. It is important to understand that in most cases, it is no one's fault. A number of things can go wrong naturally during the development of the fetus and so, the feelings of guilt, shame and anger are best avoided.

Here are the common causes responsible for miscarriages:

  1. Chromosomal defects: Chromosomal abnormalities are responsible for more than half of the miscarriages around the world. The development conditions like Turner syndrome, cystic fibrosis, Down syndrome etc. can be detected by the system and upon detection, the system often chooses to shut itself down leading to a miscarriage. If the cause of the miscarriage is identified as a chromosomal flaw, then a maternal and fetal specialist or a genetic counselor can help solve the problem.
  2. DiabetesPregnant women can develop high levels of blood sugar even if they did not have diabetes mellitus in the past. This condition is known as Gestational diabetes mellitus. It occurs primarily due the changes in the regular hormonal cycles and secretion of pregnancy hormones and can result in a variety of complications, the most severe one being a miscarriage. A miscarriage may also be caused by a chronic diabetic condition. Also, both chronic and gestational diabetes can have an affect on the development of the baby and therefore can cause defects or miscarriage. Therefore, it is best to get your sugar in control before getting pregnant and maintain it throughout the pregnancy.
  3. Thyroid conditions: Both hypothyroidism (low production of thyroid hormones) and hyperthyroidism (high production of thyroid hormones) can be responsible for miscarriages. In case of hypothyroidism, the body produces more of the other hormones in order to make up for the deficiency and this interferes with the reproductive cycle. In case of hypothyroidism, the functionality of the estrogen hormone is compromised due to the over production of other hormones.
  4. Defects in sperm: It is possible due to a number of reasons like exposure to radiation, chemotherapy, smoking, overexposure to heat etc. and it is not able to fertilize the egg properly i.e. the DNA is not delivered efficiently. The eggs can sometimes repair the damage in the DNA but this does not happen always and a miscarriage is the likely outcome. The condition in males can be treated depending on the reason for the damage in the sperm.

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