Treatments and drugs

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Threatened miscarriage

If you're having a threatened miscarriage, your health care provider might recommend resting until the bleeding or pain subsides. You might be asked to avoid exercise and sex as well. Although these steps haven't been proved to reduce the risk of miscarriage, they might improve your comfort. It's also a good idea to avoid traveling — especially to areas where it would be difficult to receive prompt medical care.

Miscarriage

With ultrasound, it's now much easier to determine whether the embryo has died or was never formed. Either finding means that a miscarriage will definitely occur. In this situation you might have several choices:

  • Expectant management. If you have no signs of infection, you might choose to let the miscarriage progress naturally. Usually this happens within a couple of weeks of determining that the embryo has died. Unfortunately it might take up to three or four weeks. This can be an emotionally difficult time. If expulsion doesn't happen on its own, medical or surgical treatment will be needed.
  • Medical treatment. If, after a diagnosis of certain pregnancy loss, you'd prefer to speed the process, medication can cause your body to expel the pregnancy tissue and placenta. Although you can take the medication by mouth, your health care provider might recommend inserting the medication vaginally to increase its effectiveness and minimize side effects such as nausea and diarrhea. For about 70 to 90 percent of women, this treatment works within 24 hours.
  • Surgical treatment. Another option is a minor surgical procedure called suction dilation and curettage (D&C). During this procedure, your health care provider dilates your cervix and removes tissue from the inside of your uterus. Complications are rare, but they might include damage to the connective tissue of your cervix or the uterine wall. Surgical treatment is needed if you have a miscarriage accompanied by heavy bleeding or signs of an infection.
Jul. 09, 2013