Miscarriages.org                                                                                                             

 

Misdiagnosed Miscarriage

Though it is a sad reality, miscarriage is becoming more and more common due to several factors such as age, physical and psychological conditions, health problems, the woman’s lifestyle, and the like.  Often women are frightened of the idea of having a miscarriage and are twice as scared when told by their doctors that they are to miscarriage soon.  But there are many instances when a doctor would diagnose one’s pregnancy as “about to end in miscarriage” but the result is a healthy and problem-free pregnancy.  This is known as a misdiagnosed miscarriage, which can be very confusing since most diagnoses are based on factors that lead to a miscarriage that is very likely to happen. 

A lot of things can lead to a misdiagnosed miscarriage.  One of these is confusion on the date of the woman’s conception and the instances of not being able to detect a fetal heartbeat during the first ultrasound.  In this case, your doctor would most likely request you to have a follow-up ultrasound to make sure that it isn’t a misdiagnosed miscarriage.  Another reason why misdiagnosed miscarriages happen is slow hCG or human chorionic gonadotropin levels.  HCG is also known as the pregnancy hormone, so a slow rising of hCG levels would point to a possibility of a miscarriage. But you have to remember that there are pregnancies that go through periods of slow-rising hCG levels as well and still end up successful in birth.  There are many instances of hCG levels rising really slowly, some of which include having a heterotopic pregnancy or vanishing twin syndrome wherein one baby dies while the other twin remains healthy.  Therefore, it is important to consult your doctor and go through more tests and examinations once these things occur during your pregnancy. 

There are also other things that could lead to a misdiagnosed miscarriage such as vaginal bleeding during week 1 to 2 of the pregnancy, a tilted uterus or a bicornuate uterus, and the decreased number of pregnancy symptoms felt during the pregnancy.  For vaginal bleeding, though it is a symptom of a threatened miscarriage, it could also mean that the embryo is implanting itself onto the uterine wall causing the woman to experience some vaginal bleeding.  With the case of a tilted or bicornuate uterus, the fetus can be hidden and therefore the doctor won’t be able to detect or examine the fetus during the ultrasound.  These are things that usually lead to a misdiagnosed miscarriage, but a good 40% to 50% percent of women who were misdiagnosed due to such instances were able to have a successful pregnancy in the end.          

It is very important that you don’t lose hope if your doctor tells you that you had a miscarriage or are about to have one in the future.  You should get a second opinion at least and go through examinations such as an ultrasound before making a serious decision about your pregnancy.  It would be very devastating to go through surgery or a D&C procedure due to a misdiagnosed miscarriage, so make sure that you gather enough information before anything else.