Miscarriages are common, occurring in about 10 percent of known pregnancies. Nevertheless, many couples are devastated by the loss, and are fearful of trying again "too soon." Myths about the best interval to delay more attempts to conceive are rife on the Internet, and of course friends and relatives are eager to supply helpful information or misinformation on this fraught topic.
A new study published recently in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology supplies needed science-based information, and the news is good: There is no reason for couples yearning to become parents to delay getting "back in the saddle!"
The study was conducted by a group led by Karen C. Schliep, PhD and Emily M.Mitchell, PhD of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, Rockville, MD. Their article is entitled "Trying to Conceive After an Early Pregnancy Loss: An Assessment on How Long Couples Should Wait."
Couples who began trying to achieve pregnancy within three months of their last pregnancy loss had just as fast if not faster time to pregnancy leading to a live birth, with no risk of pregnancy complications, as those who waited until after three months to start trying. This according to a secondary analysis of 1,083 women aged 18 to 40 years with one or two prior early losses, and whose last pregnancy outcome was an uncomplicated, unexplained miscarriage, i.e. not due to an ectopic or "molar" pregnancy.
The researchers found:
¢ Couples with a 0-to-3 month interval (n=765) compared with a >3-month interval (n=233) were more likely to achieve live birth (53.2 percent vs 36.1 percent) with a significantly shorter time to pregnancy leading to live birth.
"Our study supports the hypothesis," the authors' concluded, "that there is no physiologic evidence for delaying pregnancy attempt after an early loss."