Experiences,  Infertility

Repeated abortions. What tests should you take?

Abortions are very common. It is estimated that 15% of pregnancies end in abortions, mainly in the first 12 weeks of gestation. But the problem comes when one of us suffers from multiple abortions, which is called repeated abortions or repeated miscarriages.

Doctors traditionally consider that there is a pattern of repeated abortions when a woman experience three consecutive misscarriages. Usually doctors do not start to test if something is going wrong until the third abortion.

Do I think is worth to wait until a third miscarriage to start looking if something is not going well? I personally do not recommend waiting. In my case, I started to analyse my body after the second miscarriage. I did not want to get pregnant again and suffer so much another time.

The truth is that I did not wait to long. Tests and analysis consume time, somestimes money and stress, and sooner you get the results, sooner you know what is happening and sonner you can find a solution

What tests/analysis you and your partner should take?

  • Karyotype Test (Male and Female partner): This blood test is used to find possible chromosomal abnormalities that could cause repeated miscarriages. This test is not covered by almost all health insurances. In Barcelona each test has a cost of about 150 euros.
  • Specific Male Tests (Male partner): seminogram (the most basic test), FISH (analyze the possible numerical alterations in sperm chromosomes), the possible DNA damage in the single-strand and the double-strand of the sperm (a very specific test that for example in Barcelona only carries the CIMAB)
  • Endocrinology tests (Female partner): these tests include the woman’s major sex hormones, hormones such as the LH, FSH, Progesterone, Testosterone, thyroid, etc. The gynecologist himself or herlsef may ask you for these tests, but I suggest to visit and endocrinologist because you may get a more complete analysis. This analysis must be done with the at the start of your menstrual cycle (days 2 to 5).
  • 3D ultrasound (Female partner): Unlike the usual 2D ultrasound examinations performed by gynecologists, 3D ultrasounds can confirm if there is any uterus malformation.
  • Diagnostic hysteroscopy (Female partner): The doctor pass a really small camera through the Vagina, the cervix and the uterus to make sure everything the uterus looks fine. During the hysteroscopy the doctors may undertake an endometrial biopsy (collect a small sample of the endometrium and analyze it in order to make sure that there are no infections.)
  • Hematological tests (Female partner): These tests are important to confirm that the mum to be has no predisposition for suffering thrombophilia. And what does that mean? that your blood flow is really important in order to prepare your embryo “future bed”. In other words, your abortions may be due to the fact that your uterus is not well-irritated or the placenta may not receive the required blood flow. Many of these tests are genetic and, unfortunately, most health insurance companies do not cover them. I will write a future text talking much more specifically about the Hematological issue.
  • Immunological tests (mainly for the Female partner but also for the Male partner): Immunological tests are the last grade of the fertility tests and are quite rare to take. Our immunological system is prepared to attack every bacteria, virus or external cell that enters our body. The only part of the body, well the female body, that accepts to carry an external “thing” is the women uterus, that can carry an embryo who have its own immunological system. The problem it happens when some women can not carry an embryo because their immunological system rejects them and suffer abortions. I will like to talk about this subject deeply in new posts.

I hope this small brief helps you to determine what kind of tests you and your partner should follow.

 

 

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