Diagnosing a Blighted Ovum
Unlike with a chemical pregnancy, a blighted ovum cannot be diagnosed by measuring hCG levels. This is because the placenta that is present with a blighted ovum will continue to release hCG for a short period of time.
This can often lead many women to mistakenly believe that they are still pregnant. The only sure way to diagnose a blighted ovum is through an ultrasound. An abdominal or transvaginal ultrasound will reveal whether or not a fetus is developing within your uterus.
Should You Wait for a Miscarriage?
Many health care providers encourage their patients to wait for their bodies to expel the blighted ovum naturally.
Though this does prevent you from having to undergo invasive treatment procedures, it can also be very emotional and painful to wait for a natural miscarriage. For this reason, many women opt to have a dilation and curettage (D&C) in order to remove the tissues inside their uterus.
During a dilation and curettage, your cervix is carefully dilated. A spoon-shaped instrument is then used to remove any tissues from within the uterus. This procedure is performed under anesthetic by your health care provider.
Dealing with Blighted Ovum
As with all miscarriages, a blighted ovum can be very difficult to have to deal with. You may experience feelings of anger, worry, or regret, or you may even blame yourself for what has happened.
It is important to keep in mind that there is nothing that you can do to prevent this type of miscarriage. Moving on will take time and you may require some additional support. Look to family, friends, and support groups to provide you with the help that you need.
Future Pregnancies: Should You Worry?
The vast majority of women who have suffered from blighted ovum go on to experience healthy pregnancies in the future.
Though it is possible to suffer from multiple miscarriages, this is highly unlikely unless there is some reproductive issue.
To give your body time to heal, it is advised that you wait for one to three menstrual cycles before attempting to conceive again. Use birth control during this time to prevent any possible pregnancies.
If you have experienced more than two consecutive miscarriages, you may want to make an appointment to speak with a reproductive specialist.
You or your partner may be suffering from underlying issues that are complicating pregnancy. There are a number of treatments that can help you to prevent future miscarriages and carry a healthy baby to term.