Friday, September 26, 2014

Waiting Until 10 Weeks for a D&C. Is it safe?

Let me just state right up front, I'm not a doctor or medical professional.  In fact, the only 'medical' training I have had was in the Army (yes, I'm a former soldier) who took a combat lifesaver course.  That training involved IVs and what to do if somebody is hit with a grenade....just a little different than this.  I like to state this up front because when I do share 'recommendations', they are recommendations found elsewhere online by trusted sources.

Often, when women are not sure they are really going to miscarry or not, they wonder if it is safe to wait out a diagnosis.  I know my own doctor, as early as six weeks, was putting the scare of future infertility and massive infections into my head.  However, I was really uneasy with the idea of a D&C and I am so glad I was because I now have that little girl who is just a light in my life.

So, is it dangerous to wait out a diagnosis?  I would say no under a few conditions:
  • As long as you are staying under a physician's care and will be seen right away if there are complications (i.e. fever, signs of infection, pain, etc...)
  • Your physician agrees (and, yes, sometimes you may need a second opinion)
  • Your physician has ruled out an ectopic pregnancy 
 And here is where I want to pull out the 'trusted source', in this case the American Pregnancy Association.  On their  D&C Procedure After a Miscarriage page, they have this to say:
"About 50% of women who miscarry do not undergo a D&C procedure. Women can safely miscarry on their own, with few problems in pregnancies that end before 10 weeks. After 10 weeks, the miscarriage is more likely to be incomplete, requiring a D&C procedure to be performed. Choosing whether to miscarry naturally (called expectant management) or to have a D&C procedure is often a personal choice, best decided after talking with your health care provider."
 Without a doubt, D&Cs have their place.  I've seen on The Misdiagnosed Miscarriage that often after ten weeks, women end up in the ER or just needing to schedule the procedure because the miscarriage just won't start.

If you are not yet ten weeks and feeling pressured to end your pregnancy, is there a valid reason?  The very vague 'you don't want an infection' reason isn't a great one.  With all the woman I've talked to over the years, only a small percentage have mentioned getting an infection.  If you are staying monitored and watching for complications, asking to wait out a diagnosis is generally accepted by most doctors and, if you feel your doctor is pressuring you too soon, seek a second opinion.

As always (((hugs))) to anybody going through this scare.

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