Information following a scan suggesting a missed miscarriage

At firstScan @ Window to the Womb we want you to know how sorry we are that your sonographer has diagnosed a miscarriage. The aim of this information leaflet is to try and help you to understand what will happen. Miscarriage can be a very difficult time and there is no right way to deal with all the information you are being given.

Your sonographer has explained that you need to be referred to the hospital so they can continue to look after you both physically and emotionally. The scan does suggest that you have had a miscarriage but that your body has not yet completed the miscarriage process. The UK has very important and specific guidelines about re-scanning women in early pregnancy. This is to ensure that you receive accurate and clear information and that your care is 100% right and safe.

Your scan today shows that your pregnancy is not continuing. Sadly around 1 in 4 pregnancies miscarry before the 24th week of pregnancy. A missed miscarriage happens when the baby has stopped developing, but the pregnancy remains in the womb, and your body continues to produce hormones that can still make you feel pregnant.

  • A missed miscarriage can happen sometime before you are scanned, days or even weeks can pass without you having any symptoms.
  • There are many reasons for a miscarriage and in most cases, unfortunately, doctors cannot tell you why this has happened. You may be offered some testing to try and find out why this miscarriage happened.
  • A missed miscarriage can only be diagnosed when your sonographer has carefully measured the size of your pregnancy, this may be the size of the baby or the size of the pregnancy sac.
  • This might be your first scan, or it could be that you have had previous scans.
  • Your sonographer will ask the clinic staff to refer you to the hospital for an appointment. This may be in a few days depending on when the hospital can offer an appointment.
  • The clinic staff will ensure you have a scan report and telephone numbers for your hospital to take home with you.
  • The clinical staff at the hospital will discuss with you the options to manage your miscarriage and will arrange any follow up you require.

Some advice for you following a miscarriage

  • You may feel emotional and hormonal. There is no right or wrong way to feel. You, your partner and your family may all feel very different about what is happening. The Miscarriage Association website has a great deal of information and can offer you, and your family any support that may be needed.
  • You can expect bleeding for up to 2 weeks but getting lighter and browner as the days go by.
  • You are advised not to use tampons for this bleeding as this reduces the risks of infection. They are OK to use for your next period.
  • It is best to avoid sexual intercourse until this bleeding has completely stopped. This again reduces the risk of infection.
  • You may have some pain which will feel a bit like period pain.
  • If you develop a temperature, any offensive discharge or flu like symptoms then you should see your General Practitioner.
  • Sometimes your breasts can feel uncomfortable, so it is advisable to wear a well-fitting bra for a few days.
  • Your next period can be as early as 2 weeks and up to 6 weeks following your miscarriage.
  • It is advisable to take Folic acid (200 micrograms daily). If you have been prescribed a different dose, then you should follow your prescription.