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Conceiving after a miscarriage more likely to result in successful pregnancy, says research

Miscarriages are heartbreaking, but according to researchers, they do come with a silver lining.

A team from the University of Aberdeen has found that women are more likely to have a successful pregnancy if they conceive within six months of a pregnancy loss.

Previous advice from the World Health Organization told women to wait six months after a miscarriage before trying to conceive again, but this study found that conceptions made within six months of a miscarriage were less likely to result in another miscarriage or a preterm birth.

conceiving after miscarriage Photo: Dreamstime

"Contrary to WHO guidelines, recommending at least six months' wait after a miscarriage, our meta-analysis of all published studies on this subject to date shows definitively that less than six months is best,” Dr. Sohinee Bhattacharya told The Telegraph.

Battacharya says that couples shouldn’t delay pregnancy because of previous medical advice to wait, but should try to conceive again “as soon as they feel mentally and physically ready”, as she told the BBC.

Why are conceptions made after miscarriages more successful? Find out on the next page.

The reason why conceptions made after miscarriages are more successful is still unclear, but Bhattacharya did offer some insight: “One explanation might be that if somebody has had a miscarriage they might take particularly good care of themselves, be more motivated and may even be more fertile—but that is just speculation at this point.”

"Couples can choose to try again whenever they feel ready to do so"

conceiving after miscarriage Photo: Fotolia

"This review is very important,” Ruth Bender Atik, national director of the Miscarriage Association told BBC. "It encourages couples who want to try to conceive soon after miscarriage, and also reassures those who worry that they may have miscarried because they conceived too soon after a previous loss. Above all, it confirms that couples can choose to try again whenever they feel ready to do so.”

The study shows that trying to conceive soon after a miscarriage is safe, but Janine Elson of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists urged couples to do so only when they both feel physically and emotionally ready.

“Counselling should be offered to help manage the psychological stress miscarriage can cause,” Elson said. “Women must ensure that any pain and bleeding has stopped and they are taking folic acid before resuming sexual activity.”

READ: How men can support their partners after a miscarriage

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