Infertility can happen at any stage, even if a woman has had a baby before. Physical, hormonal, age-related, lifestyle, and even psychological factors can lead to female infertility. The range of conditions include:
- Anovulation, or the absence of ovulation, makes up 25% of female infertility.
- Endometriosis, which occurs when endometrial tissue grows outside the uterus.
- Pelvic scarring can block or distort the fallopian tubes, as well as fibroids.
- Congenital uterine abnormalities (CUA), cervical insufficiency, genetics, and abnormal growths on the uterus (fibroids) also cause infertility.
- Finally, age-related infertility can occur in women over 35. Luckily, only some causes of infertility are likely to lead to pregnancy loss.
Excessive bleeding and pelvic pain
Some degree of bleeding and pain after a miscarriage is normal. However, if both symptoms are extremely unbearable, there may be a deeper issue. If a woman also experiences persistent cramping, mucus, fevers, vaginal discharge, and chills, medical assistance is best. Bleeding can be due to uterine fibroids, which don’t usually grow. But during the first trimester, the body has a high estrogen level, which can affect existing growths. Women with fibroids are much more likely to have a miscarriage during early pregnancy than women without. So if a woman experiences bleeding and pain before or after a miscarriage, this could be the underlying cause.
An irregular period is one of the first signs of secondary infertility. A hormonal imbalance is a usual cause; however, this should not happen after a miscarriage. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), polyps, and cysts cause menstrual irregularities. These conditions may lead to miscarriages in the early months of pregnancy. Fibroids also affect the menstrual cycle and can lead to miscarriages if untreated. Stress, life changes, diet, and even sleep patterns can cause irregular menstruation to occur naturally. However, experiencing miscarriages alongside those symptoms can often mean something more.
Yes, that miscarriage can happen again, giving a sign that something is wrong. Many miscarriages occur naturally when the fetus or unborn baby has a genetic issue, meaning an abnormal number of chromosomes. This problem is usually unelated to the parents. However, once a woman has had 2 or 3 consecutive miscarriages, it is called a recurrent miscarriage. Cervical insufficiency, uterine abnormalities, and hormonal disorders are some of the leading causes of this issue. Recurrent miscarriages are more prominent in women above 35, when hormonal levels are more likely to be inconsistent.
What you can do
A miscarriage does not cause infertility, but infertility can cause a miscarriage. Make sure to look for the signs after taking some time to physically and emotionally rest. Secondary infertility can be confusing, especially if the woman or couple had an easy first birth. However, a lot can change between pregnancies, which can affect fertility. Speak to a reproductive specialist to get to the root cause of symptoms.