Miscarriage: will it happen again?

If you suffer one miscarriage, do you have an increased chance of losing another baby in pregnancy?

Suffering a miscarriage is never easy to get over and can leave couples afraid of trying again because they fear a further tragedy. But what is the chance of suffering a second miscarriage?

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What are the chances of miscarriage?

Generally, the chances of miscarriage across all women – including first-time pregnancies – is that one in six new pregnancies will end in miscarriage within the first six weeks, with the chances dropping off slightly up to 12 weeks, and dropping off dramatically beyond 12 weeks, to just one in every 100 pregnancies ending in late miscarriage.

Am I more likely to have another miscarriage if I have suffered one already?

If you have suffered a miscarriage before, there is an 80 per cent chance that your next pregnancy will be successful, so that is a one in five chance that you will suffer another miscarriage.

If you have suffered two miscarriages previously, you will have around 72 per cent chance of enjoying a successful pregnancy, but if you have had three or more miscarriages, the chances of having a successful pregnancy do drop to around 50 per cent or less.

Should we try again?

Couples react in different ways after losing a baby in pregnancy. Sometimes one partner may feel ready to try again and the other will be reluctant. Understandably, it’s important to talk to each other about how you feel, your fears and your hopes. Sometimes it’s easy to have this conversation quite soon after your miscarriage, but if it doesn’t feel right, be patient with each other.

It may help you to follow these six steps to coping with miscarriage.

When you do feel ready, find out more about trying again and pregnancy after a miscarriage.

What if there is a physical reason for our miscarriages?

There are some medical conditions which couples are not aware they have, which could cause repeat miscarriage. Some of these can be addressed, but other factors such as your age may also play a part in the increased risk of repeat miscarriage.

Until you have suffered three miscarriages, a doctor is unlikely to investigate any medical reasons for why you are not carrying a baby to full-term. However, it is important to note that only one percent of all couples are at risk of suffering recurrent miscarriages (that is: at least three consecutive miscarriages).

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