USC Fertility

Late Pregnancy Loss

What is a late pregnancy loss?

Miscarriages that occur after the first trimester often have different causes than early miscarriages, however occasionally there is some overlap.
Late miscarriages are often caused by syndromes that can have a genetic cause or by severe birth defects (abnormalities in the physical formation of the baby like a heart defect or neural tube defect).

Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome, called sticky blood syndrome, which can cause early losses is also responsible for late miscarriages. There are other blood clotting disorders that could be problematic in late pregnancy that are not causes of early losses.
Medical conditions that are not well controlled, such as high blood pressure, diabetes or thyroid can also cause issues after the first trimester. Certain infections, both bacterial and viral can be the cause of a late pregnancy loss. The cervix can also be the cause of a late loss, as it can be unable to hold the pregnancy in as a result of previous surgeries or genetics.

The treatment for a late pregnancy loss very much depends on the cause. Therefore an individualized approach is necessary for any future pregnancies.