What Is a Low Threat and Why Does It Happen?
What Is a Low Threat?
The threat of miscarriage is vaginal bleeding that occurs during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. Bleeding is sometimes accompanied by abdominal cramps. These symptoms indicate that a miscarriage is possible; hence the condition is known as threat of miscarriage or miscarriage.
Vaginal bleeding is quite common among pregnant women. About 20 to 30 percent of women will experience bleeding during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. About 50 percent of these women will carry their baby until birth.
The exact cause of a threatened abortion is often unknown. However, it is more common among women who have had a previous miscarriage.
What Are the Symptoms of a Low Threat?
Vaginal bleeding during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy can be a sign of threatened miscarriage. Some women also have abdominal cramps or lower back pain.
During a true miscarriage, women often feel a dull or sharp pain in the abdomen and lower back. They can also pass through the vagina with a clot-like material and tissue.
If you are pregnant and experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor or obstetrician right away.
Who Is at Risk for a Low Threat?
The actual cause of a threatened abortion is not always known. However, there are some factors that can increase your risk of having it. These include:
- a bacterial or viral infection during pregnancy
- trauma to the abdomen
- advanced maternal age (over 35)
- exposure to certain drugs or chemicals
Other risk factors for a threatened abortion include obesity and uncontrolled diabetes. If you are overweight or have diabetes, talk to your doctor about ways to stay healthy during pregnancy.
You should also tell your doctor about any medications or supplements you are taking. Some may not be safe to use during pregnancy.
How Is a Low Threat Diagnosed?
If a threatened abortion is suspected, your doctor may perform a pelvic exam. During a pelvic exam, your doctor will examine your reproductive organs, including your vagina, cervix, and uterus. They will look for the source of your bleeding and determine if the amniotic sac has ruptured. The pelvic exam will only take a few minutes to complete.
An ultrasound will be done to monitor the fetal heartbeat and development. It may also be done to help determine the amount of bleeding. A transvaginal ultrasound, or an ultrasound using a vaginal probe, is often more precise than an abdominal ultrasound in early pregnancy. During a transvaginal ultrasound, your doctor inserts an ultrasound probe about 2 or 3 inches into your vagina. The probe uses high-frequency sound waves to create images of your reproductive organs, allowing your doctor to see them in greater detail.
Blood tests, including a complete blood count, may also be done to check for abnormal hormone levels. Specifically, these tests will measure the levels of hormones called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG) and progesterone in your blood. HCG is a hormone your body produces during pregnancy, and progesterone is a pregnancy-promoting hormone. Abnormal levels of both hormones may indicate a problem.
How to Treat a Threat of Miscarriage?
Miscarriage is usually not preventable. However, in some cases, your doctor can suggest ways to reduce your risk of miscarriage.
While you are recovering, your doctor may tell you to avoid certain activities. Bed rest and avoidance of sexual intercourse may be recommended until your symptoms subside. Your doctor will also treat any conditions known to increase the risk of complications during pregnancy, such as diabetes or hypothyroidism.
Your doctor may also want to give you a progesterone injection to increase the hormone level. If you have Rh-negative blood and your developing baby has Rh-positive blood, your doctor will also administer Rh immunoglobulin. This prevents your body from producing antibodies against your child’s blood.
What is the Long Term Outlook?
Many women at risk of miscarriage give birth to healthy babies. This is more likely if your cervix is not already dilating and the fetus is still firmly attached to the wall of the uterus. If you have abnormal hormone levels, hormone therapy can often help you carry the baby to your term.
About 50 percent of women at risk of miscarriage do not have a miscarriage. Most women who miscarry will have successful pregnancies in the future. However, if you’ve had two or more errors in a row, you should see your doctor to discuss possible causes.
For some women, the threat of miscarriage is a stressful experience and can cause anxiety and depression. It’s important to talk to your doctor if you’re experiencing any symptoms of discomfort after threatened or miscarriage. They can help you get the treatment you need. Your doctor may also know about local support groups where you can discuss your experience and discuss your concerns with others who may be related to your experience.
How to Maintain a Healthy Pregnancy?
Miscarriage is difficult to prevent, but certain behaviors can help support a healthy pregnancy. These include:
- not drinking alcohol
- not smoking
- not using illegal drugs
- minimizing caffeine consumption
- avoiding certain foods that can make you sick and harm your baby
- avoid exposure to toxic chemicals or harsh cleaning solutions
- prompt treatment of viral or bacterial infections that occur
- taking prenatal vitamins like folic acid
- exercising at least two hours a week
You can also maintain a healthy pregnancy by getting early and comprehensive prenatal care. Getting emergency prenatal care makes it possible for your doctor to detect and treat potential health problems early in pregnancy. This prevents complications and helps ensure the birth of a healthy baby.