Recurrent miscarriage

A woman who has suffered a single sporadic miscarriage (15-20% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage) has an 80% chance of her next pregnancy being successful. Other than empathy and reassurance, no other investigations or treatments are usually required.

If, having suffered one miscarriage, the second pregnancy also miscarries, then this woman has a 70% chance of her next pregnancy being successful.

If the woman is even more unfortunate and suffers three consecutive miscarriages, she has a 60% chance of her next pregnancy being successful.

Thus two or three consecutive miscarriages occur more frequently than chance alone would predict, suggesting that in a proportion of these woman there may be an underlying cause, warranting investigation and treatment. Recurrent miscarriage, defined by the consecutive loss of two or more pregnancies with the same partner, and having no more than one live child, affects 3-5% of the population.