Stillborns

Dr. Elizabeth Pryor answers the question, Is it possible to avoid having another stillborn baby?

Question

At 27 weeks, my baby was stillborn. The doctor who delivered my baby said that it looked to be a clot in the afterbirth or something, and this prevented the baby from receiving any blood. I had a high-risk pregnancy because I have severe asthma and my asthma is steroid dependent. What may have happened and what might I do to prevent it next time?

Answer

This is a tragic situation. It will take a long time for you to deal with this.

The good news is that if indeed a clot was noted in the afterbirth (placenta), you can be treated with heparin, a blood thinner, during your next pregnancy. Heparin can decrease the chances of another blood clot occurring.

Additionally, a lack of amniotic fluid could be related to not enough blood reaching the baby. When you find a high-risk ob-gyn, I recommend you visit that doctor before getting pregnant. Bring all of the medical records of your delivery so that the doctor may review them and plan the best course of treatment for you. I recommend you see a high-risk ob-gyn doctor known as a perinatologist.

Unfortunately, these things happen without any fault on the part of the doctor or patient. Pregnancy can sometimes be very complicated. The most important thing is to look to the future with a positive light.

The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child's condition.

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