How to determine an early pregnancy dead: reasons

Far from always successfully starting a pregnancy ends in a positive outcome. In medical practice, the first trimester is considered the most dangerous period of time when bearing a child, during which various complications can occur leading to fetal death.

Frozen pregnancy is a pathology in which the fetus ceases to grow and develop, it dies in the womb. Sometimes this complication results in spontaneous miscarriage. However, quite often, a dead embryo remains in the uterine cavity, which can cause inflammation, and with an aggravation of the process, sepsis is a serious infectious disease in which microorganisms circulate in the blood.

No toxicosis

Termination of morning sickness and vomiting is a sign of a frozen pregnancy in the first trimester. However, women do not always pay attention to this phenomenon, because they believe that unpleasant symptoms simply disappeared, and the body adapted to the appearance of the child. As a rule, toxicosis in a dead pregnancy ends very sharply. Usually this symptom does not appear immediately after the death of the fetus, but after a few days or even weeks.

Basal temperature reduction

If a pregnant woman monitors her basal temperature, then when it decreases, a missed pregnancy can be suspected. When the fetus dies, a thermometer displays a temperature of less than 37 degrees Celsius (usually 36.4-36.9). However, according to this symptom of a frozen pregnancy in the first trimester, it is impossible to accurately diagnose, since an incorrect measurement or error of the thermometer is possible.

The appearance of pain

The appearance of menstrual pain similar to the lower abdomen may indicate a missed pregnancy. However, this symptom appears after a long period of time, sometimes up to several weeks after the death of the embryo. On the contrary, pulling pains in the lower abdomen, accompanied by bloody discharge, often speak of spontaneous miscarriage.


In the presence of an infectious process in the uterus due to the decay of a dead fetus, a woman has an increase in body temperature to subfebrile values ​​(up to 38 degrees). However, if this process begins to be systemic, hyperthermia to very high values ​​(40-41 degrees) and a general severe condition of the woman's body are possible.

Gynecological examination

On examination, the obstetrician-gynecologist measures the volume of the uterus. During a frozen pregnancy, it lags in size, which can serve as a diagnostic criterion for pathology. However, this symptom cannot be used in the first weeks of the gestational period, since at this time the volume of the uterus practically does not differ from its dimensions before the onset of conception.

During an ultrasound scan, the doctor may detect a dead pregnancy. This method is considered the "gold" standard in the diagnosis of this pathology. The absence of palpitations and fetal lag in size are the main symptoms of a missed pregnancy with ultrasound.

Behavior in a Frozen Pregnancy

If there are subjective symptoms of a missed pregnancy, you should immediately consult a doctor for a thorough diagnosis. If, using a blood test for hCG and ultrasound, this diagnosis is confirmed, measures are taken to remove the embryo from the uterine cavity.

Sometimes doctors take wait-and-see tactics, the purpose of which is to spontaneously start a miscarriage. When this does not happen, or the fetus died a long time ago and there is a chance of infection of the uterus, an abortion is performed. With a period of less than 8 weeks of pregnancy, the use of an artificial miscarriage with the help of drugs is possible.

At short gestation periods, vacuum aspiration, the safest method of surgical abortion, is possible. In later weeks of pregnancy, uterine cavity cleaning is used. This procedure is carried out under general anesthesia, the materials obtained as a result of it are sent for histological examination.

How long can a frozen pregnancy occur?

Stopping the development of the embryo can occur at any time, but doctors recommend that special attention be paid to signs of missed pregnancy in the early stages, i.e. up to 14 weeks. The second trimester of pregnancy, of course, is considered no less dangerous and if signs of a missed pregnancy are detected, you should consult a doctor.

Particularly noteworthy is the 8th week. Since it is at this time that the “laying” of all vital organs of the embryo takes place, and it is exposed to the greatest influence of negative factors.


Frozen pregnancy (ST) is the intrauterine death of the fetus. It can occur at any stage of pregnancy, although it most often happens in the first trimester. Although the baby’s heart begins to beat in the first two weeks, the mother still can’t determine that a tragedy has occurred, because she often does not even suspect her pregnancy. Sometimes there are vaginal discharge, especially soreness in the lower back.

If during planned examinations it turns out that there is a threat of "fading" of pregnancy, the woman is immediately hospitalized, they try to extend the baby's stay in the bosom as long as possible. If the gestational age is more than 30 weeks, all risks are weighed and a cesarean section is suggested.

A frozen pregnancy can occur at any age, due to this effect on the female body in a variety of circumstances. Therefore, it is so important to undergo systematic examinations by a gynecologist and obstetrician.

What is the danger?

A pregnant woman makes an irreparable mistake by not coming in time for an appointment with a doctor and not attaching importance to the manifestations of signs of a frozen pregnancy both in the early term and in the second trimester. In rare cases, the pregnant body itself rejects the dead fetus - the process ends with a miscarriage and a successful outcome for the woman's health. Indeed, if a frozen fetus has been in the womb for a long time, then intoxication may develop with fever, sharp pains and weakness.

With such symptoms of a frozen pregnancy, urgent hospitalization is required, where the doctor will prescribe a special drug that will provoke a contraction of the uterus and lead to a miscarriage. The sooner this procedure is performed, the better for the woman herself.

A fetal egg, being in the uterus for more than 6-7 weeks, can lead to disseminated intravascular coagulation - DIC, which is extremely life-threatening. With this diagnosis, the blood loses its ability to activate the coagulation process, then possible bleeding can become fatal.

What is important to remember

In order to tune in and successfully endure the baby in repeated pregnancy, it is necessary to adhere to several rules:

  • consult every time discomfort occurs. Any unusual symptoms indicate that you need to see a doctor,
  • do not worry. Gynecologists agree that the chance of having a healthy baby during the second pregnancy is much higher,
  • find a psychologist. Psychological assistance is the key to success in re-pregnancy,
  • try to relax. Find a new hobby, go on vacation, start learning a foreign language - all this eliminates bad thoughts and sets up for a positive result.

After the curettage procedure, it is important to follow the same regimen as after childbirth: relax physically and mentally.


It is dangerous that fetal death may not be detected for a long time and may be asymptomatic for a pregnant woman. Problems with detecting a frozen pregnancy do not arise if the expectant mother regularly takes tests and goes to the doctor’s office. It is he who can ascertain the fact of a mismatch in the size of the uterus, taking into account the duration of pregnancy, and a check for ultrasound will allow you to know exactly about the heartbeat of the embryo.

How to recognize a frozen pregnancy? In general, in all trimesters, a frozen pregnancy appears equally:

  • frequent discharge with blood,
  • general weakness, chills, and trembling,
  • temperature rise,
  • drawing and aching pains in the lower abdomen,
  • unreasonable cessation of toxicosis,
  • stopping breast augmentation,
  • an ultrasound examination reveals the fact of a cardiac arrest in a child,
  • mismatch of the size of the uterus.

There are such exceptions when the symptoms of a missed pregnancy may have some differences.

The basal temperature during a frozen pregnancy drops to the level characteristic of the absence of pregnancy.

If a woman did not notice a frozen pregnancy in time, and the dead fetus is in the uterus for a long time, intoxication can begin, for her the characters:

  • sharp pain in the groin and lower back,
  • temperature rise,
  • pallor of the skin
  • weakness.

Frozen pregnancy can be complicated by the development of blood and tissue infections - sepsis, since the decay products of the dead fetal egg enter the bloodstream of a woman.

Can you feel a frozen pregnancy? It is worth noting that the manifestation of symptoms is extremely individual, and in some cases the woman does not know that the pregnancy has stopped in development, until the next examination. If a woman has the sensation of a missed pregnancy, she needs to see a doctor, but she should not immediately panic and commit rash acts. It is advisable to get advice from several specialists, at least two.

There are real cases when in one antenatal clinic a woman was diagnosed with “frozen pregnancy”, and in another they said that everything was in order, and as a result, this pregnancy was resolved by successful delivery.


What can a pregnant woman feel if fetal development has stopped? The feelings may be different depending on the first time a woman is faced with a similar situation or she already had a sad experience. The most common sensations are an increase in the general temperature of the body, the appearance of weakness and fatigue, and the sudden onset of apathy and depression.

It is important to understand that these sensations cannot, with 100% accuracy, indicate the beginning of a pathology. These are only indirect symptoms that you need to pay attention to. No need to panic if such feelings begin to manifest. Such feelings are very often experienced by pregnant women at the beginning of the term due to the fact that the body is simply being rebuilt.

Another useful video on the topic:

Genetic failure

Genetic failure is the most common reason why fetal development is stopped. In 70% of women, fetal fading occurs before 8 weeks, which is due to abnormalities in the fetal chromosomes. Anomalies in genetics begin to manifest rather early, and almost all of them are incompatible with life. Bad genetics can be transmitted both from the mother and from the father, or the fault is the unsuccessful combination of parental genes. In the event that a woman’s fetus freezes more than three times, then a genetic disorder is to blame.

Hormonal disorders

Hormonal disorder can affect the course of pregnancy for two reasons:

  • the first cause of fetal freezing is a lack of progesterone, without it it cannot stay and develop in the uterus,
  • the second reason for the development of a frozen pregnancy in the first trimester is an excess of male androgen hormones.

Hormonal disorders should preferably be determined before pregnancy and undergo a full course of treatment. It is recommended to visit a gynecologist in advance, because only after examination he will be able to say which tests are needed.


Infections are also a common cause of missed pregnancies. With a successful conception, the immunity of the future mother weakens. The placenta and fetal membranes reliably protect the fetus from the attack of antibodies, but the mother herself becomes vulnerable to various viruses and bacteria. Her infectious diseases worsen, the vaginal flora activates, and then a dangerous moment comes for the baby - infection.

Cytomegalovirus and rubella are detrimental. Moreover, they are dangerous if they become infected during pregnancy, and with a “sick” infection, on the contrary, antibodies are produced that prevent the exacerbation of the disease.

No less dangerous for the formation of a missed pregnancy is considered the usual ARVI, which most often proceeds very hard, since the immunity works at half strength. The danger itself threatens not from the pathogen, but from the symptoms of the disease: fever and intoxication, which leads to a violation of the circulatory system. The fetus does not receive the required amount of nutrients and oxygen.

This is the reason for the development of a frozen pregnancy, the signs of which may occur, but may proceed secretly.

Blood clotting disorder

Blood clotting disorders, which are caused by antiphospholipid syndrome also affect fetal development. Frozen pregnancy often occurs for several reasons:

  • due to the direct effect of antiphospholipid antibodies on the egg, which interferes with the implantation of the ovum,
  • the formation of blood vessels of the placenta is reduced and in connection with this there is a decrease in its functions,
  • Signs of a frozen pregnancy at 6 weeks, may occur due to a violation of the full development of the fetus and the placenta itself. The reason for this is blockage and damage to the uteroplacental vessels.

When pregnancy can freeze

There is a danger of fetal death at any stage of pregnancy, but the likelihood of this tragedy is higher at certain periods. So, according to statistics, most often a missed pregnancy is diagnosed:

  • 3-4 weeks
  • at 8-11 weeks,
  • at week 16-18.

Earlier Pregnancy Fading, as a rule, they are associated with anembryony, a pathology in which egg fertilization occurred, but the cells did not begin to divide (often the problem is caused by sperm quality). Such a fertilized egg behaves “as healthy” - getting into the uterine cavity causes the corresponding changes and even begins to form membranes. But after a couple of weeks, such a pregnancy is terminated.

8th week - the period of embryogenesis, the laying of the main organs of the embryo, it is at this moment that the manifestation of genetic abnormalities that make the fetus unviable is likely.

Reasons why fading occurs on week 16-18, still cause controversy among experts. Perhaps the reason is the abnormally formed placenta (this process ends on the 15th week).

How to suspect a missed pregnancy

Often, in the first days after the pregnancy fades, the woman's well-being even improves: toxicosis stops, the sensitivity of the nipples decreases, which worries women in the first trimester. They turn to the doctor when really alarming signs appear already - pains in the lower abdomen and bloody issues. In the second trimester, a woman raises an alarm earlier - when she ceases to feel the baby's movements (normally, at a period of 18-20 weeks, about 10 movements of the baby are felt per day).

All this (and even spotting) does not necessarily indicate an abortion, but this situation requires urgent consultation of your doctor!

If you do not go to the doctor, the fetus, alas, begins to decompose in the uterine cavity: the discharge becomes purulent, the temperature rises, and finally, the most formidable complication is DIC (disseminated intravascular coagulation, which is characterized by the formation of blood clots in blood vessels with a simultaneous decrease in blood coagulability) ) - all this without emergency medical care can be fatal.

How a doctor will determine a frozen pregnancy

The first thing that makes any doctor wary is the mismatch between the size of the uterus and the fetus and the obstetric period of pregnancy. Even if there are no signs of a frozen pregnancy, this is the reason for a thorough examination.

The second sign that warns the doctor during the examination is that he will not hear the baby’s heartbeat (this can already be done with a stethoscope at weeks 18-20). However, this is not an obligatory sign, since the location of the placenta on the front wall of the uterus does not allow either the doctor to hear the heartbeat, or the mother to feel the baby’s movements.

To confirm or dispel fears, the doctor will prescribe additional examinations. This is an ultrasound (ultrasound) study, as well as an analysis of the level of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in the blood.

An error, unfortunately, is not possible. If the hCG level does not correspond to the gestational age, the doctor does not see the baby’s heartbeat at the ultrasound, then the pregnancy has already been terminated! It is necessary to complete this process as soon as possible before the consequences unfavorable for the health of the woman come.

How to interrupt a frozen pregnancy

If the doctor is sure that the process of abortion of the deceased fetus has already begun, then most likely he will allow the body of the woman to cope with the problem on her own. A frozen pregnancy will end in a miscarriage, and this, no matter how unpleasant it sounds, is the most favorable outcome.

For up to 8 weeks of pregnancy, special medications can be taken - the process will be similar to medical abortion.

Finally, surgery is required at a later date. The doctor will take the same steps as during a conventional abortion: using vacuum aspiration or curettage of the uterine cavity. Even if you are fundamentally against abortion, you must understand that in this case it is a necessary operation - the child has already died.

Regardless of whether the miscarriage occurred on its own or if the dead fetus was removed by the surgeon, the doctor will prescribe antibiotics for you. Do not neglect this recommendation, such therapy will help to avoid infection of the uterine cavity and in the future to endure a healthy child!

Why pregnancy freezes

The most common reason is fetal genetic abnormalitiescausing disturbances incompatible with further development. Not always the "culprits" of this mother, father, or both at once - there are also random mutations, while both parents are absolutely healthy in genetic terms.

Most often, such a pregnancy is terminated at the earliest possible date: 75% of genetically abnormal pregnancies are terminated at 6–7 weeks, another 20% at 12–17 weeks, and no more than 7% of such babies develop up to 28 weeks.

In second place - hormonal disorders in the mother: lack of progesterone, diabetes mellitus, hyper- and hypofunction of the thyroid gland, hyperandrogenism - increased content of male sex hormones and a number of other pathologies. It should be noted that most of them are not an absolute obstacle to a successful pregnancy, but require mandatory correction, and preparation should begin before conception.

They also play their part in spontaneous abortion. autoimmune diseases, in particular antiphospholipid syndrome, provoking thrombosis. This is the main reason for the death of the embryo after the 10th week of pregnancy. It should be noted that timely treatment reduces the negative impact of this factor and allows you to endure and safely give birth to a healthy child.

Infections Despite the common misconception, “from a runny nose” pregnancy does not stop. The main infectious culprits of a missed pregnancy are rubella and flu, especially with complications. However, other diseases are also called among the causes: cytomegalovirus, herpes, toxoplasmosis (especially if the infection occurred already during pregnancy), all types of sexually transmitted diseases.

In vitro fertilization. For a reason unknown so far, absolutely healthy embryos planted in the uterus of an ideally trained woman can stop their development early on.

Among the indirect reasons are also called age of parentsespecially mother. Most likely, this is due to the fact that with age, the risk of genetic “mistakes”, and the burden of infections, and the number of chronic diseases “accumulate”.

At 20 years old, spontaneous abortion threatens approximately 10% of women, at 35 years old - 25%, at 45 years old - 50%.

How to avoid a frozen pregnancy, and what is the likelihood of its recurrence

Alas, it is impossible to completely guarantee yourself against an adverse outcome, because, as emphasized above, a number of genetic “breakdowns” are the result of an accident. And yet, if the first pregnancy was frozen, it is recommended to give the remainder of the fetus for genetic testing to find out if such a result could not be the result of heredity.

The risk of repeated spontaneous abortion in the presence of a history of one miscarriage is about 8% (that is, it is exactly the same as any woman, regardless of the number of successful births).

However, if subsequent pregnancies end in miscarriages, then, most likely, the risk is about serious genetic disorders. So, the probability that after three miscarriages and the fourth pregnancy will terminate ahead of schedule - 40%, the fifth - more than 60%. Do not experiment with your own health and risk the opportunity to become a mother. After two interrupted pregnancies, be sure to consult a geneticist and, if necessary, use the IVF procedure. Choosing a genetically healthy embryo will significantly increase the chances of having and having a healthy baby.

If you have not revealed any genetic abnormalities and diseases affecting the bearing of a child, then you can plan a new pregnancy within 3-6 months after the dead.

If it turns out that non-genetic disorders became the cause of pregnancy fading, then it is necessary to pay attention to treatment and preparation for conception. Do not rely on chance.

Infertility after a single frozen pregnancy is a rather rare complication (less than 10%), but repeated frozen pregnancies in themselves become a risk factor, causing hormonal disruptions.

What can we advise to mothers whose pregnancy ended in failure

What happened to you is not uncommon. Modern research proves that every fifth pregnancy terminates spontaneously. It’s just that some miscarriages occur at such an early stage that women do not even suspect that they were pregnant, considering the event a malfunction of the menstrual cycle.

Remember: you are not to blame for what happened, just like the father of the child and the doctors. The chances of this child to survive were no higher than if pregnancy had not occurred at all.

What happened to you is a tragedy. Do not be afraid to discuss this with your husband, parents, girlfriend. Do not lock yourself! Feel free to contact a psychologist.

Frozen pregnancy in the vast majority of cases is an accident. Nothing will prevent you from becoming pregnant and having a healthy baby. The chances that your next pregnancy will be terminated are exactly the same as your girlfriend's, who has no children yet. Or like a friend who already has five children. In other words, unfavorable statistics do not accumulate; every time everything starts from scratch.

And may a happy motherhood story appear on this blank sheet!


An incorrect lifestyle leads to a frozen pregnancy, and the first signs can appear immediately.

Improper and inadequate nutrition, insufficient number of walks in the fresh air, tight clothes, long time spent at the computer monitor - these are the factors that directly affect the development of the fetus.


The most accurate way to determine a missed pregnancy in the early stages and in the later ones is an ultrasound scan, during which the specialist will check:

  1. Inconsistency of the size of the uterus with the pregnancy.
  2. Lack of palpitations and respiratory movements.
  3. Improper position, deformation and contour around the fetal body in the later stages, indicating tissue decomposition.
  4. Lack of visualization and embryo growth in early pregnancy. Very rarely, but it also happens that the fetal egg still grows for some time, and the embryo does not form in it or has stopped developing.

This also causes problems that sometimes arise with the determination of a dead pregnancy by analysis of hCG, the second method for diagnosing pathology. It happens that an ultrasound scan determines the development of pregnancy, and the level of hCG in the blood continues to increase, because it is produced by the membrane of the fetal egg or by itself it remains at a high level for several days after the death of the fetus.

As you can see, a test during a frozen pregnancy can show a positive result, because its effect is based on the detection of hCG in the urine.

Although, as a rule, the level of hCG during a dead pregnancy decreases sharply or is equal to zero. Read more about the level of hCG during pregnancy →

Consequences and termination of a frozen pregnancy

As a result of a frozen pregnancy, two possible scenarios are possible:

  1. Spontaneous miscarriagein the early stages, when the uterus rejects the dead embryo and removes it from the body.
  2. Medical intervention.If it is not done on time, then in the late stages of a dead pregnancy, a decaying fetus will poison the mother's body with decay products, which will lead to serious consequences for her health.

So, if a frozen pregnancy is diagnosed, then its termination at the moment is possible in several ways:

  • Medical abortion.This is a way to terminate a frozen pregnancy in the early stages. A woman is prescribed drugs that provoke uterine contractions, and, as a result, a miscarriage.
  • Curettage, or curettage (cleaning) during a frozen pregnancy. Quite popular, although not the most desirable procedure, since during it tissue is injured and the likelihood of complications is high. The operation is carried out under general anesthesia and is a mechanical cleaning after a frozen pregnancy of the uterine cavity, removal of its upper mucous layer, a special tool that is inserted into the cervical canal, after providing access through installation of dilators. After the operation, bleeding or inflammation may develop, so the woman should be in the hospital for several more days, where she will be monitored.
  • Vacuum suction.The operation, carried out under anesthesia or local anesthesia, is that the woman is cleaned the uterine cavity using vacuum suction. It looks like this: the tip of the vacuum apparatus is inserted into the cervical canal (without expansion). After the procedure, the woman should be under the supervision of a doctor for about two hours. Of course, this method of aborting a dead pregnancy is more gentle than curettage. In addition, the woman will not have to stay in the hospital for a long time.
  • Childbirth. In the later stages, termination of a frozen pregnancy is much more difficult, mainly from a psychological point of view. The fact is that a non-developing pregnancy is a contraindication for cesarean section (the contents of the uterus can be infected), so there is only one way out - artificial stimulation of labor. That is, a woman cannot simply disconnect from the process, for example, under anesthesia, she must give birth to the dead fetus on an emergency basis.

In the early stages, doctors sometimes make no attempt to terminate a frozen pregnancy, waiting until the uterus itself rejects the fetus. But it is impossible to maintain pregnancy after the fetus freezes.

Treatment and recovery after a frozen pregnancy

After a frozen pregnancy, an examination is prescribed to determine the cause of the pathology. If one can be established, it is recommended to undergo a course of treatment.

As a rule, tests after a frozen pregnancy include:

  • blood test for hormone levels,
  • smear and examination of the vaginal microflora for the presence of genital infections,
  • histology after a frozen pregnancy - a study of the uterine epithelium. For analysis, a thin section of the upper layer of the uterus or tube is taken or the material obtained during curettage is used.

As for the restoration of the uterus after surgery during a frozen pregnancy, a course of antibiotics, hemostatic agents, and also abstinence from subsequent pregnancy for a certain time (usually depends on related factors) are usually prescribed.

In the case of revealed genetic abnormalities of the fetus, after a frozen pregnancy, a genetic consultation will be required to determine the compatibility of partners.

Pregnancy after a frozen pregnancy

How much time a woman will not want to become pregnant after the fetus freezes is determined by the doctors in each case, at least it will be six months. Until that moment, a woman needs to use contraception and not worry that she will no longer be able to conceive a child. These fears are completely in vain.

Frozen pregnancy is usually a special case, which in no way indicates violations in the reproductive system of women. Even if there are two frozen pregnancies in a row, according to statistics, in 75% of cases there is a chance of a normal conception and bearing a fetus.

Helping a woman survive a frozen pregnancy is the task of loved ones. In severe cases, the help of a psychologist may be required, as some patients develop a fear of pregnancy.

In order not to survive this blow again, a woman must undergo a thorough examination, adhere to a healthy lifestyle and competently approach the planning of the next pregnancy. It is very important that the future father supported her in this. And the point here is not only moral support: it has been established that miscarriage in some cases is due to factors emanating from the man.

To avoid a frozen pregnancy, you should lead a healthy lifestyle, regularly visit a gynecologist, take all tests during the planning of the child.

Verification of the article: Ilona Ganshin,
gynecologist practicing

Risk factors

The main risk factors for a failed pregnancy are:

  1. Age is under 18 years.
  2. Pregnancy in older and later reproductive years of a woman or her partner is after 30 years for primiparas and over 35 for multiparous. The risk in older and later reproductive years is associated with the gradual extinction of the processes of natural selection, as well as with various disorders in the partner's reproductive system. For comparison: the risk at the age of 20-24 years old is about 9%, at the age of 30-40 years old - 40%, at the age of 45 years old - 75%.
  3. Repeated episodes of miscarriage in history. The greater the number of such episodes, the worse the prognosis for subsequent conception.

In addition, chronic diseases of the female genital organs or acute and, especially, chronic extragenital diseases contribute to miscarriage.

The main ones are:

  • erased forms of hyperandrogenism of the ovarian, adrenal or mixed etiology and hypofunction of the ovaries,
  • PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome),
  • the presence of a persistent bacterial-viral infection in the body, most often (in 52%) it is a mixed viral-bacterial infection, as well as chlamydial (in 51%), ureaplasma and fungal microflora (about 42%),
  • chronic inflammatory processes of the female genital organs, repeated abortions and intrauterine contraceptives,
  • acute or chronic infectious diseases, they rarely independently cause fetal death of the fetus, but lead to the development of fetopathy, contributing to the death of the fetus under the influence of other factors,
  • endocrine diseases - insufficiently compensated diabetes mellitus, thyroid dysfunction, mainly hypothyroidism,
  • chronic renal pathology,
  • severe arterial hypertension and cardiovascular failure,
  • various systemic pathology of connective tissue in the form of systemic lupus erythematosus, systemic scleroderma, antiphospholipid syndrome, etc.

Less significant factors include:

  • smoking,
  • alcohol and drug addiction,
  • certain medications
  • excessive consumption of drinks containing caffeine (strongly brewed tea, coffee and other tonic drinks),
  • low body mass index.

The sensitivity of the embryo or fetus to damaging factors varies in different periods of gestation. The shorter her term, the more vulnerable they are. The most critical periods are the 7th - 12th days when the implantation of the fetal egg takes place, the 3rd - 8th weeks (the beginning of the development of the embryo), the 12th week (the period of placental formation) and the 20th - 24th weeks (the stage of formation of the most important fetal systems).

In most cases, a frozen pregnancy is based on any one dominant cause and several risk factors and interacting mechanisms of the development of this pathological condition. How to understand that the death of the embryo or fetus?


Under this pathology is understood the spontaneous death of the fetus. Most often, fading occurs in the first months of pregnancy. There are times when a woman is diagnosed with a missed pregnancy in one of the next two trimesters. Signs in the first trimester are different from symptoms in the later stages.

At certain periods of gestation, the fetus is more vulnerable. The first dangerous term of the first trimester is the third and fourth week of pregnancy. In the period after fertilization, the egg is fixed in the endometrium of the uterus. The ninth week is considered the most critical: for most women, it is during this period that a frozen pregnancy occurs. 8 weeks - 11 weeks - the period when the main organs of the unborn baby are formed, therefore, hormonal and functional failures can occur in a woman.

Doctors say that a woman of any social status and any age may experience this pathology. But if young girls have a 10% risk of an ectopic pregnancy, then for women over 45, it rises to 50%. Recently, cases of this dangerous pathology have become more frequent. Experts attribute this to the spread of IVF technology and environmental degradation.

How long is a frozen pregnancy possible?

The cessation of fetal development can occur at any age and at any period of prenatal development, however, it is most often diagnosed in the early stages - in the first trimester of pregnancy.

Currently, statistics allow us to determine the periods most at risk of developing pathology. Most cases of a frozen pregnancy was recorded at 8 obstetric week, 3-4, 9-11, 16-18 week are less dangerous. In the second and third trimester of pregnancy, the risk of developing pathology is significantly lower.

What is the danger of a dead pregnancy

In the early stages of pregnancy, due to implicit signs of anomaly, the expectant mother may not immediately pay attention to the cessation of fetal development. Rejection of the fetal egg occurs, usually within 14-17 days, so a woman can walk with a dead embryo in the uterus up to 2.5 weeks. And if a miscarriage does not happen, and longer. In this case, an appeal to the gynecologist occurs already at the stage severe inflammation and poisoning of the body pregnant membranes.

At any stage of prenatal development, fetal pathology can lead to a change in blood coagulation and further bleedingthat poses a threat to a woman’s life.

Genetic disorders of the fetus

The most common cause that affects the appearance of a frozen pregnancy in the early stages (in the first trimester), experts call chromosomal abnormalities the embryo itself. Pathology can be inherited from the father or mother. As a rule, the consequence of genetic malfunction manifests itself in the early stages of pregnancy.

Obstetrician-gynecologists claim that a probable cause second or third stop embryonic development is an unsuccessful combination of parental genetic material.

Rhesus conflict

The difference between the positive Rh factor of the child and the negative mother is called by the doctors the rhesus conflict. Rhesus conflict is manifested in the production of antibodies by the mother's body, as a result of which oxygen starvation and fetal death may develop. As a rule, specialists in time diagnose such a condition and take preventive measures to prevent it.

How long is a frozen pregnancy?

Fetal fetal development is possible at any stage of pregnancy, but more often this occurs in the early period, in the first trimester. The death of an embryo usually ends in a spontaneous miscarriage one to two weeks after its death. However, if the dead fetus does not leave the mother’s womb, the decay products of its tissues become toxic to the female body. In this case, for the safety of a woman, a medical abortion is necessary.

Expert : obstetrician-gynecologist of the highest category, Ph.D. Svetlana Potapova.

Frozen pregnancy: symptoms that should alert

  • the toxicosis suddenly stopped
  • for no reason, elevated body temperature lasts for a long time,
  • rectal temperature lowered
  • pains in the uterus, similar to early contractions,
  • the discharge became bloody,
  • the mammary glands stopped growing
  • general feeling of weakness, chills,

Frozen pregnancy: consequences

If you notice any of these signs in yourself, immediately consult a gynecologist. Reinsurance in this situation will be more appropriate than procrastination and intoxication.

Signs of intoxication are severe pain and the development of DIC syndrome (disseminated intravascular coagulation is a problem that causes difficult stopping bleeding).

If the pregnant woman’s body is not able to reject the dead fetus and have a miscarriage on her own, the gynecologist will prescribe drugs to reduce the uterus in order to clear it of decay products.

Frozen pregnancy: early causes

  • genetic "breakdowns" - it is they who cause a frozen pregnancy most often, as a rule, deviations occur in the first trimester and are not compatible with the life of the embryo,
  • lifestyle (illiterate diet, alcohol abuse, smoking, “hanging” for gadgets and a computer, adverse ecology, lack of exercise),
  • hormonal failure: either an insufficient amount of progesterone (the embryo is retained in the uterus due to this hormone), or an excess of the male hormone androgen. When planning a pregnancy, such hormonal disorders are easy to detect and correct,
  • APS (antiphospholipid syndrome) is a syndrome that provokes problems with blood coagulation. Due to thrombosis or increased blood coagulation in the vessels, the intensity of the formation of placental vessels decreases, and the placenta does not fulfill its functions. APS is usually diagnosed at 6 weeks gestation,
  • infections. Rubella and CMVI are the most dangerous (cytomegalovirus infection, sexually transmitted, with a kiss, when using general hygiene items or utensils). Although the placenta protects the fetus from viruses, with exacerbation of the disease, immunity decreases, the embryo becomes infected and its possible death,
  • taking medications contraindicated during pregnancy,
  • severe stress, weight lifting.

Doctors consider the most dangerous period during which the fetal development to fade.8th week of pregnancy.

How to diagnose a missed pregnancy?

  • gynecological examination: the doctor may notice problems with the size of the uterus and establish a lower rectal temperature,
  • Ultrasound: will show the cessation of the fetal heartbeat. Do not panic ahead of time if the doctor did not hear the fetal heartbeat through a stethoscope - this is possible with the front location of the placenta or the presence of fat on the abdominal wall,
  • blood test for hCG (chorionic gonadotropin). When fetal development stops, the level of hCG hormone will be lowered (with repeated fading, the hormone level will remain high for several weeks after the embryo dies).

Treatment after confirmation of the diagnosis

If the gynecologist confirmed the diagnosis of a missed pregnancy, he prescribes a course of treatment:

  • for a dead pregnancy of up to 8 weeks, drugs are prescribed that provoke a miscarriage,
  • if necessary, release the uterine cavity from the remains of the fetus, vacuum aspiration is performed,
  • curettage (medical abortion) is performed if the remains of the fetal egg in the uterine cavity are visible on the ultrasound.

Wrong lifestyle

The abuse of alcohol, drugs or smoking is harmful to any person. However, the child is particularly sensitive to these influences in the womb. For its further successful development, bad habits should be abandoned.

In most cases, fetal miscarriage is the result of an unfavorable combination of various conditions and factors that are completely overcome for any woman.

How does a frozen pregnancy manifest: signs and symptoms

What are the first signs and symptoms of a frozen pregnancy in the early stages, how to determine it? In the first trimester of pregnancy, embryo arrest may not be noticeable to a woman.

Initially, a characteristic sign and symptom of a frozen pregnancy in the first trimester can serve the disappearance of toxicosis and sensitivity of the mammary glands.

After detachment of the fetal egg from the uterus in the abdomen and lower back cramping pulling pains, at the same time, genital or bloody discharge is released from the genitals. Signs of intoxication may appear with decay products of the membranes: sharp pain, fever, chills, weakness.

At all stages of gestation, a sign of fetal pathology is a decrease in basal body temperature. It should be noted that low basal temperature is not found in all women with a frozen pregnancy.

The main symptom of a missed pregnancy in the late stages of prenatal development is lack of motor activity a child. After the appearance of any of the above signs or symptoms, you should consult your doctor for an accurate diagnosis.

Treatment and consequences after a frozen pregnancy

The tactics of treating fetal pathology will depend on the duration of prenatal development and the state of health of the mother.

After making a diagnosis and taking tests after a frozen pregnancy, the doctor takes a wait and see attitude, because in most cases natural miscarriage - The most gentle way to remove the fetus for a woman’s health. If the natural process has not occurred, special medicationscausing artificial contraction of the uterus. It should be noted that drug treatment is possible up to 8 weeks of pregnancy.

Another way to extract a fetal egg is called vacuum aspiration. Currently, this treatment method is the most popular among specialists. The advantages of vacuum can be called: minimal damage to the mucous membrane of the uterus and cervix, rapid restoration of the uterine cavity after the procedure, the minimum time for the operation.

At a later date, the cleaning of the uterus after a dead pregnancy occurs when surgery (curettage). After the gynecological procedure, the manifestations of various inflammatory processes, adhesions (synechiae), and even uterine perforations are likely.

Prevention of missed pregnancy

Before planning your next pregnancy, you should go through preventive treatment to prevent the recurrence of pathology. For this purpose, it is necessary to pass tests to identify possible causes of fetal development arrest.

What examinations and analyzes give up after a frozen pregnancy?

  • Pelvic ultrasound,
  • analysis of the level of hormones in the blood,
  • blood test for the level of antibodies to viral diseases,
  • smear test for STDs,
  • partner genetic compatibility research,
  • results are also important

If all tests show no abnormalities, treatment is most likely not required. In the event that abnormalities in a woman’s health are detected, it is mandatory to undergo a course of preventive treatment prescribed by a doctor.

Pregnancy planning after fetal freezing

Is it possible, how and when to get pregnant after a frozen pregnancy? Experts look differently at the question of pregnancy planning. So, in European countries pregnancy is already allowed 2-3 months after the pathologywhile in the countries of the former USSR, doctors recommend abstaining from conception for 6 months.

For example, if the cause of the cessation of fetal development was a viral infection, experts advise to wait until the body develops an immune response against the infection.

Many people ask about pregnancy planning after curettage of a dead pregnancy !? After curettage, the gynecologist appoints a mandatory three-month intake of contraceptives to restore the uterine mucosa. In the case of a chromosomal abnormality of the embryo, it is necessary to wait only until the pelvic organs recover after the removal of a dead pregnancy. Then you can safely try again. As we wrote above, you have a 90% chance that your next pregnancy will be successful.

Frozen second trimester pregnancy: symptoms

In addition to the signs characteristic of a fading pregnancy in the first trimester, in the second trimester these symptoms become more pronounced. In addition, additional ones join them:

  • change in the nature and color of the discharge. Normally, discharge in the second trimester should be either whitish or transparent, and at the same time not too plentiful. In case of darkened and thicker discharge with a splash of blood, you should immediately consult a gynecologist,
  • dull and aching pains in the lower abdomen,
  • excretion of colostrum from the chest,
  • the absence of fetal movements at 18-20 weeks of gestation. A pregnant woman should feel about 10 movements per day at intervals of about 2 hours, If you do not feel the fetal tremors for about 3 hours, a situation associated with a lack of oxygen (hypoxia) is possible: in this case, call an ambulance or consult a gynecologist.

Pregnant recommendations

Prosperous prenatal development following the simple recommendations will help the child:

  • take folic acid before conception,
  • take a fortifying course of vitamins,
  • balance your diet
  • lead a healthy lifestyle
  • watch the microflora of the genitals,
  • do not self-medicate
  • Follow your doctor’s recommendations.

Statistics show that in most cases, repeated pregnancy ends in the birth of a healthy baby, so do not despair and blame yourself or your partner.

Is it possible to get pregnant after this?

A frozen pregnancy does not necessarily happen again, so a woman should not take this diagnosis as a “final sentence."

However, competent preparation for the upcoming pregnancy is necessary. It is possible to make plans for the future not earlier than in 3 months, but better - in half a year. During this time, your gynecologist will be able to figure out why a dead pregnancy occurred and eliminate the causes that caused this condition. Following the recommendations of the gynecologist, you will have good chances for a normal pregnancy and childbirth: statistics show that this happens in 85% of women. Therefore, one should not hope for a case, make assumptions and draw doubtful conclusions. Modern treatment methods help most women cope with the problem of missed pregnancy.

To prevent a recurrence of a frozen pregnancy , the gynecologist will prescribe an examination:

  • Ultrasound scan
  • vaginal swab
  • hormonal research
  • histological examination,
  • genetic research.

Mechanisms of fetal retention in the uterus

The prolonged presence in the uterus of a frozen embryo or fetus in its development, as expected, occurs due to the following mechanisms:

  • Tight attachment of the emerging placenta as a result of deep germination of chorionic villi. This may be due to:

- a high degree of activity (in terms of proliferation) of chorionic villi, - structural and functional inferiority of the uterine mucosa at the site of implantation of a fertilized egg, - incomplete preparation of endometrial changes in the implantation zone.

  • Inferiorities of the immune system in relation to the rejection reaction of immunologically foreign tissue.
  • Decreased contractility of the myometrium due to:

- the chronic course of inflammatory processes in the uterus, as a result of which a receptor apparatus deficiency is formed, which leads to a decrease in sensitivity to substances formed during the death of the embryo and causing a decrease in myometrial tone, - impaired enzymatic biochemical processes involved in protein metabolism, - continued ( for some time after the death of the embryo or fetus) trophoblast production of progesterone and placental lactogen, a specific trophoblastic beta-globe ins, and placenta - some peptide hormones, biogenic amines and immunosuppressive peptides that suppress uterine capacity.

Freezing of one fetus during multiple pregnancy

This pathology occurs once in a thousand multiple pregnancies. The reasons for this disaster are many - improper blood circulation, oxygen starvation, abnormal development of the placenta, and so on.

Very often this is due to intense competition of the fruits.

At a very early stage (up to 2-3 weeks), the frozen embryo can simply “dissolve”, be absorbed by the survivor, or remain a small clot of mucus, which will become known at the time of delivery. Much worse,

In later stages, this is a dangerous situation for the second fetus and for the mother. But with a multiple pregnancy, the mother may not feel any changes, all the same movements, palpitations. It is determined, especially in the early stages, only during examination.

The deceased has an extremely negative effect on the health status of the remaining fruits. They almost always observe a violation of their blood circulation, a heart defect, other disorders. If this pathology is detected at a later date, a decision is made individually. In the second trimester, this is most often the removal of a frozen fetus. After 28 weeks, they look at the condition of the surviving fetus. Sometimes premature delivery carries fewer risks.

Frozen ectopic pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is itself a life-threatening condition for a woman. It is impossible to bear a child with her, the fetus always dies. Most often, with the growth of the embryo, the tube ruptures and the contents are released into the abdominal cavity. This condition provokes peritonitis and death of a woman.

Less commonly, such a pregnancy freezes and does not develop. The frozen embryo continues to remain outside the walls of the uterus. Symptoms of this pathology do not differ from those that occur with ordinary ST.

There can be only one treatment - emergency surgery.


A condition in which an embryo has not formed or is missing in the fetal egg. If he is present there, he stopped at the earliest stages of development - up to 6 weeks. This is a rare phenomenon that occurs by chance, the reasons for the doctors are not fully understood. Doctors tend to believe that the bulk of cases of anembryony are associated with an unsuccessful combination of parental genes - when at least one of the parents had a cell with a serious pathology.

Another name for this condition is empty fetal egg syndrome. Indeed, with him, fetal membranes actively develop in which there is no child.

Such a pregnancy is asymptomatic, all the usual signs are present - toxicosis, absence of menstruation, swelling of the glands. Pathology is monitored only during a planned ultrasound. But more often a sign of anembryo becomes a spontaneous early miscarriage.

Pregnancy Fading Prevention

How to get pregnant after a frozen pregnancy? Is it possible? Yes it is possible! - doctors say. Why pregnancy freezes, it is still unknown exactly. However, not one woman gave birth after a frozen pregnancy, it is quite possible to give birth to a healthy baby. Of course, if necessary (according to the results of analyzes), you need to undergo treatment. Before planning pregnancy, it is recommended to get vaccinations against rubella and chickenpox. This is especially true for women at risk - in this case, it is work in child care facilities, where you can easily get these diseases. You should also treat sexually transmitted diseases, undergo a fortifying course of vitamins, and stimulate the immune system. The treatment regimen must be agreed with the attending physician. And if all the test results are normal, then treatment may not be required. The best protection against fetal fading is a healthy lifestyle when planning pregnancy.

missed pregnancy, diagnosis, prevention of missed pregnancy

Body recovery

Planning the conception of a child should be no earlier than six months after an unsuccessful attempt. During this time, a woman should carefully take care of her health, eat properly, and avoid stress. In order to avoid an earlier pregnancy, contraceptives selected by your doctor should be used. Important! If a woman psychologically hard suffered the death of an unborn child, you should consult a psychologist who will help to cope with depression and anxiety for the outcome of future pregnancies

If the fetus froze

The most suitable method of treatment will be chosen by the doctor based on how in the early stages a dead pregnancy appeared and how many days have passed since conception. If such a terrible diagnosis was made, the first thing to do is to save the mother’s life and her health.

There are two treatment options:

  1. If no more than 60 days have passed since conception, a miscarriage is provoked by taking special medications. If after a subsequent ultrasound diagnosis it is revealed that not all the remains of the ovum have come out, curettage is prescribed.
  2. When the diagnosis is made after 60 days, a vacuum aspiration procedure (vacuum mini abortion) is performed. For this, a woman under anesthesia cleanses the uterine cavity using a vacuum suction, which creates a negative pressure. Such an operation lasts about 10-15 minutes. With such an abortion, subsequent curettage is usually not required, the uterus is less injured. However, a decision on curettage can be made if an ultrasound scan shows that not all embryo remains are removed.

This is how a vacuum abortion is done.

There is another option - this is a spontaneous abortion in the very early stages of pregnancy. Usually, with this type of abortion, a woman does not even realize that she was pregnant. The mother's body can reject the embryo already in the first days of his life for various reasons. In this case, there is a slight delay in menstruation. In some cases, the doctor may suggest that you wait until a spontaneous abortion occurs, if it happens on its own, you will not have to intervene in the body.

Why does pathology develop?

Why pregnancy freezes, many ladies are interested. Doctors attribute the following factors to most causes of fetal freezing:

  1. Infectious and viral diseases transferred during the period of gestation.
  2. Blood diseases and diagnosis of rhesus - conflict.
  3. Congenital or acquired pathology of the uterus, frequent abortions.
  4. Violation of the hormonal level and unhealthy diet, the use of harmful foods in the diet.
  5. Constant stress and a woman’s genetic predisposition.
  6. Harmful and unfavorable working conditions, life, as well as previously conducted IVF or artificial insemination.

In addition, harmful habits and previous infectious diseases, pathogens, and STDs pose a certain danger.

How to get pregnant again if there has previously been a fetal developmental arrest

If you follow all the instructions of the doctors and undergo the prescribed course of treatment and recovery after an unsuccessful pregnancy, doctors guarantee a very high chance of a favorable outcome in the future. After the setback, you need to take a break for six months, no less. During this time, the mother’s body is fully restored. In addition to recovery, work will be carried out to diagnose and identify the causes of fading pregnancy.

Be sure to watch this video in which the girl tells how she endured and gave birth to a healthy baby after a frozen pregnancy:

It is very difficult and not always possible to establish the exact cause of pregnancy termination. Parents should not give up. We must believe that everything will work out. Stress is detrimental to the health of any person, especially a woman who is preparing for pregnancy. Under stress, the body produces the hormone cortisol, which inhibits the production of other hormones, thus causing a hormonal disorder. Parents need to undergo a full examination and wait for the birth of their baby. May your child be healthy! Good luck everyone!

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Vacuum abortion - what is it

Vacuum aspiration is a gentle abortion method available for up to 6 weeks. Removal of the fetal egg from the uterus is carried out using a special vacuum pump. The main advantage of the method is the absence of surgical intervention. The cost of a vacuum abortion depends on the level of the clinic, but you can’t save on your health. Given the advantages of this method, its price is justified.

Advantages of Vacuum Abortion:

  • No risk of mechanical damage to the cervix - the gynecologist does not use cutting tools.
  • The minimum stay of a woman in the clinic - together with the examination of the gynecologist and preparation, including ultrasound, the procedure will take no more than 40-50 minutes.
  • Minimal damage to the mucosa, rapid healing of the uterine cavity - a vacuum aspirator sucks the fetal egg without causing injuries to the organ itself.
  • Less psychological stress - the procedure is unpleasant, but incomparable with surgical abortion.
  • Quick recovery of the menstrual cycle, hormonal levels.
  • Significant reduction in health hazards.

How to determine at home?

Detect the presence of pathology at home using the Inexscreen test. You can buy a test in each pharmacy, however, it is worth understanding that it will not make an accurate diagnosis, but only: it is important! determine whether there are deviations in the course of pregnancy or not. And then everything is in your hands. In order not to worry about your condition and the condition of the baby, you should see a gynecologist.

Frozen pregnancy is not a sentence. If this misfortune happened once, this does not mean that there is no longer a chance to become a mother. It is necessary to follow all the recommendations of a specialist: take antibiotics, be examined, take care of yourself. After a period of rehabilitation and follow-up examination by a gynecologist, you can again think about conception and bearing

What to do with an undeveloped pregnancy?

Independent cessation of fetal development is a natural protective mechanism. When his life is stopped, the level of placental hormones decreases, substances are released into the uterus that contribute to its reduction in order to expel the dead embryo from the cavity. Until an 8-week period, a frozen pregnancy often ends in a spontaneous miscarriage.

The uterus independently rejects the embryo about 2 weeks after its death:

  • in case of anembryony - 50% of cases
  • after an incomplete miscarriage – 75%,
  • fetal developmental arrest – 33%.

Up to 2 months of pregnancy, spontaneous cessation of development ends in a miscarriage

But the wait-and-see attitude is not always justified, therefore, they carry out curettage or medical interruption so as not to lead to sepsis and other complications:

  1. Scraping. The procedure is performed to remove the fetus and membrane from the uterine cavity. Types of cleaning: vacuum aspiration - up to 5 weeks, surgical curettage - up to 12 weeks, labor stimulation - in the late trimester up to 22 weeks.
  2. Drug interruption spend up to 42 days of pregnancy, the size of the uterus should correspond to the beginning of 8 weeks. Prescribe progesterone antagonists (Mifegin), after 36 hours, prostaglandin (Saitotek) is needed. The next day, contractile movements of the uterus begin, the fetus leaves the uterine cavity on its own.

Artificial births are also carried out after 22 weeks in the second and third trimester.

After evacuation of the ovum, antibiotic treatment is prescribed to reduce the risk of chorioamnionitis and endometritis. The tissues of the embryo and membranes are sent for histological and genetic examination. This is necessary to understand why the embryo stopped developing.


Even with this gentle method of terminating a pregnancy, there is a risk of developing unwanted complications. While taking drugs, it may develop:

  • anaphylactic shock,
  • profuse uterine bleeding,
  • menstrual irregularities,
  • pain syndrome,
  • incomplete abortion.

Incomplete abortion and bleeding, which lead to the need for surgical intervention, are considered the most serious complications.A woman should be alert for strong discharge, requiring frequent changes in personal hygiene items, and she urgently needs to see a doctor.

Pain after taking abortion pills is also perceived by women differently. Basically, it can be endured or, in extreme cases, stop (suspend) No-shpoi. If the drugs do not help get rid of the pain, then the woman should consult a doctor.

The latest effects of farmabort are menstrual irregularities. The absence of menstruation for 2-3 months or their increased duration is also a pathology and requires medical advice. In such cases, gynecologists prescribe ultrasound and medications that help restore menstrual function.

The rate of fetal development in the first months of pregnancy

Before talking about why the pregnancy in the first trimester freezes, you need to talk about the rate of fetal development in this period (1-12 weeks). This is the time when a woman learns that she is pregnant and plunges into a new state for her. Of course, the expectant mother should know what happens to the baby, and what can be considered the norm.

So, at the end of the third week, the embryo attaches to the wall of the uterus. Already in the next two weeks, he begins to have a heartbeat and a neural tube forms. At the seventh week, the baby already has hemispheres of the brain, and from the 8th week organs and parts of the body begin to be laid. The ninth to tenth week is the period when an ultrasound specialist can already see the face of the crumbs. At the turn of 11-12 weeks, the baby moves, and its endocrine system begins its work.

Initial symptoms

In most cases, it is in the first months that a woman is diagnosed with a “dead pregnancy”. Symptoms in the first trimester of this pathology can be the following:

  • Discharge with blood.
  • Temperature rise.
  • General malaise, chills.
  • Pain in the lower abdomen, which are pulling in nature.
  • The uterus does not meet the deadline in size.
  • An ultrasound specialist cannot determine the fetal heart rate.

When the first signs appear, a woman needs to visit her gynecologist as soon as possible. If the frozen fetus continues to be in the uterus, intoxication may develop, which is very dangerous for the health and life of the woman. Sometimes the body itself rejects the dead fetus, and a woman experiences a miscarriage. Read more about how a frozen pregnancy manifests itself in the early stages, we will describe further.

General malaise and external signs

After the pregnancy has stopped, the decay products of the membranes begin to enter the body of a woman. As a result, infection occurs. Against this background, a woman's temperature rises (with a dead pregnancy, this is quite a common occurrence), headaches and chills occur. A woman complains of a general malaise. Drawing pains appear in the lower abdomen. With a frozen pregnancy, such discomfort is noted quite often. Typically, these signs appear 3-4 weeks after fetal death. But these symptoms in a woman in the early stages can appear in the normal course of pregnancy, so they must be compared with other observations.

Changes occurring inside the female body are necessarily reflected in its functions. In the first months of pregnancy, a woman's breast usually swells, the mammary glands become painful, and the nipple is sensitive. When a frozen pregnancy occurs, the symptoms in the first trimester may be as follows: the chest becomes softer and stops sore, toxicosis may stop. Another symptom is bleeding. Bloody discharge during a frozen pregnancy usually appears two weeks after the death of the embryo. They can be brownish in color, disappear, and then, after several weeks, heavy bleeding is possible.

Basal temperature

Some patients continue to measure this temperature after pregnancy. Do it rectally, orally or intravaginally. In the first months of carrying a baby, this temperature is normally kept at around 37 degrees. If the fetus freezes, the temperature begins to drop sharply. This is due to the fact that the hormones necessary for the normal development of the fetus are simply not produced by the body. But a change in basal temperature is not an absolute indicator of a dead pregnancy, other examinations will be required to confirm the diagnosis.

Medical Examination Results

How does a frozen pregnancy appear upon examination by a gynecologist? First of all, the doctor states that there is no cyanosis of the cervix and vaginal mucosa. Another sign is the mismatch of the uterus to the sizes that are characteristic for a given gestational age. To confirm his suspicions, the specialist should appoint women the necessary examinations. The most reliable way to recognize a missed pregnancy is an ultrasound of the uterus. On this examination, a specialist will be able to determine if there is a growing embryo in the uterine cavity and whether heart contractions are determined. Also, a woman will definitely be assigned a blood test to determine the level of the hCG hormone. In the normal course of pregnancy, gonadotropin levels should increase. When pregnancy fades, its growth stops.


Some women resort to tests to determine if they are pregnant or not. When fertilization occurs, the test usually shows two stripes. Logically, after the embryo freezes, the test should show one strip. But this does not always happen. A woman should not waste time and at the first suspicion to wait for the result from such an unreliable method of diagnosing a missed pregnancy, like a test. He may show a negative result too late. And lost time can lead to very serious consequences.

What is the pathology dangerous?

When a woman has a frozen pregnancy at an early stage, and she ignores the above symptoms, a strong intoxication of the body develops. Body temperature can rise up to 39 degrees, vomiting, increasing weakness, and a drop in blood pressure may occur. The pulse gradually becomes threadlike. If a woman does not provide medical assistance on time, then she will develop sepsis, which may very well lead to death. Therefore, at the first suspicion of pathology, it is necessary to appear to the gynecologist.

As a rule, the death of the embryo usually leads to spontaneous miscarriage. But in this case, you should definitely visit a doctor. Not always frozen embryo is completely removed from the uterus. There are times when a woman needs to “clean” - curettage, which is aimed at eliminating the remains of the embryo and its membranes.


Why does pregnancy freeze? The reasons for the cessation of fetal development and fetal death are individual for each woman. Sometimes a combination of certain factors leads to such trouble. Some can be avoided, others are beyond our control. So, let's discuss why an early pregnancy is dead. The reasons may be the following:

  • The presence of a woman's genetic pathology. Doctors consider this factor to be the most important. There are frequent cases when the pregnancy freezes at the eighth week due to chromosomal abnormalities. Therefore, this period is considered critical and the most dangerous in the first trimester. The fault can be both the genes of the mother and the genes of the father. There are cases that the genes of parents are generally incompatible. Pathologies at the level of genetics usually provoke a repeated frozen pregnancy.
  • The reason for the fading may be violations at the level of hormones. If in the female body there is a lack of progesterone, then the embryo simply can not properly fix on the wall of the uterus. Another reason may be an excess of androgen (male hormone). The problem of pregnancy fading due to hormonal disorders can be solved only before conception. Therefore, women who have the listed disorders should consult a doctor during pregnancy planning and undergo the necessary treatment.
  • Infectious and viral diseases can also cause a woman to have a frozen pregnancy in the early stages. The most serious are such infectious diseases of a woman during bearing a child, such as rubella and cytomegalovirus. SARS and colds alone are not as dangerous to the fetus as the intoxication and fever that often accompany these diseases. These symptoms threaten fetal death due to a lack of nutrients and oxygen in a pregnant woman during the illness.
  • Another cause of death of the embryo is a violation of blood coagulation in women. This problem helps to reduce the formation of blood vessels of the placenta, which violates its function.
  • The wrong lifestyle of the expectant mother can also contribute to the fact that she will have a frozen pregnancy in the early stages. The reasons are known to everyone: smoking, drinking alcohol, a sedentary lifestyle, malnutrition, and so on.

What to do with pathology?

So, a woman discovers the presence of the above symptoms and suspects that she has a missed pregnancy. What to do? Of course, you need to contact your treating gynecologist as soon as possible. An experienced doctor will already be able to determine the presence of pathology at the examination. To confirm the diagnosis, he will send the woman to an ultrasound and write out the necessary tests. Only after the examination, the gynecologist will be able to make an accurate diagnosis and, if necessary, to prescribe the correct treatment.

Therapy after treatment

After the procedure for removing the frozen fetus from the uterine cavity, the woman will be prescribed special therapy. It involves a course of taking antibacterial drugs in order to prevent inflammatory and infectious complications. If hormonal disorders became the cause of the pathology, then the patient will need individual therapy with hormonal drugs. Also, the doctor may prescribe multivitamins to strengthen the body's defenses.

After the procedure, at first, a woman should fulfill all the doctor's prescriptions. What can not be done?

  • Take a hot bath.
  • To have sex.
  • Lift weights.
  • Visit public places (baths, swimming pools, saunas, etc.).
  • Swim in the pond.

In order to avoid a new pregnancy, a woman will be prescribed oral contraceptives for up to 6 months.

Planning a new pregnancy

Before planning a new pregnancy, it is necessary to establish the cause of the fetus freezing. Therefore, both parents will be assigned an examination, which includes visits to specialists such as a urologist, gynecologist, geneticist and endocrinologist. Mandatory for such an examination is the appointment of tests for latent infections. Once the cause is established, the doctor will determine the date of planning a new conception. But in any case, from the moment a woman underwent a course of treatment from a previous frozen pregnancy, at least six months should pass.

Many women are afraid of being pregnant again. These fears are groundless. In most cases, a frozen pregnancy is an isolated case, and women who decide to re-conceive safely give birth to healthy children. The chances of a successful completion of a new pregnancy are increased if the couple leads a healthy lifestyle and strictly follows all the doctor's recommendations.

Watch the video: Signs to know baby in womb is OK or not (February 2020).