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What Is a Missed Miscarriage?
By: Maria Servold EPLA Editor
One of the most devastating things a pregnant woman can go through is a routine ultrasound that ends up diagnosing a miscarriage.
Some women learn they are miscarrying when they begin to bleed or cramp suddenly - a dramatic and gut wrenching experience that we hope no woman has to suffer through alone.
Other times, a woman may go in for an ultrasound early in her pregnancy, expecting to see and hear a growing baby, only to see no movement and hear no heartbeat. In such cases, a doctor will usually diagnose the woman with a missed miscarriage. While the term sounds a bit vague, it simply means that the baby has already died, but the woman’s body has not yet begun to pass the baby. It can also be called a delayed or silent miscarriage.
The term “silent” is apt, as many women in this situation not only are not aware that their baby has died, but they also often choose to wait for their body to begin the miscarriage process after their diagnosis. For days or weeks, a woman waits with a silent life within her until her body passes the baby. Other women choose to undergo a D&C (dilation and curettage) procedure, which will remove the baby and other tissue from the uterus.
Many women have described the pain of a missed miscarriage, including EPLA President Emily Carrington and a woman named Keri, who shared her story on the U.K.’s Miscarriage Association website.
At EPLA, we strive to support women experience all types of early pregnancy loss. For more information, visit our resource page or read other posts here on our blog. If you are in Hillsdale, Michigan, where we are located, we can provide a home miscarriage kit to help manage a missed miscarriage.
Maria Servold is an Editor at the EPLA, Assistant Director of the Herbert H. Dow II Program in American Journalism, and Lecturer in Journalism at Hillsdale College
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