If you've had a miscarriage, you'll want to learn more about what researchers believe may help women avoid future pregnancy loss.
Progesterone plays an important role for women who are trying to get pregnant—and if a recent study's findings are any indication, the hormone may be key to helping women stay pregnant. A study from Yale School of Medicine and the University of Illinois at Chicago suggests that women who have suffered pregnancy loss in the first four to six weeks of pregnancy could benefit from progesterone, which might help slash miscarriage risk for future pregnancies.
Since nearly 25 percent of women who become pregnant are affected by fetal loss, this new finding represents a potential cause for hope for women, especially those who have struggled with multiple miscarriages. The researchers involved studied the effects of progesterone in 116 women who had experienced multiple miscarriages to come to these findings, which were published in Fertility & Sterility.
The researchers used endometrial function tests (EFT) to observe progesterone's success—EFT indicates the health of a woman's uterine lining and an abnormal result is linked to pregnancy loss. According to their findings, progesterone appears to strengthen endometrial function, causing women to produce more endometrial secretions.
"We are very pleased to find that these results reinforce the evidence that progesterone could be a very beneficial, inexpensive, and safe treatment for many women with a history of recurrent pregnancy loss," study lead author, Mary Stephenson, M.D., said in a release for the study. "The positive results show us that next we need to study progesterone as a treatment for recurrent pregnancy loss with a prospective randomized trial to validate the findings."
If you've experienced recurrent miscarriages, you may want to discuss these findings with your doctor. While there's no proof that this solution could prevent future miscarriages, it might represent the first step to better understanding—and eventually preventing—this devastating issue.