Women who lose their pregnancies have a high risk of developing PTSD, and we need to talk about it

Women who have miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies are at risk for developing post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a new study.

Researchers from Imperial College London studied 113 women who had recently lost a pregnancy. Of those women, 80% had suffered a miscarriage, while 20% had ectopic pregnancies (in which the egg implants outside the uterus).

According to the study, 40% of the women reported signs of PTSD after pregnancy loss.

Lead researcher Dr. Jessica Farren says women often don’t receive the support they need because of the stigma surrounding miscarriage.

"There is an assumption in our society that you don't tell anyone you are pregnant until after 12 weeks. But this also means that if couples experience a miscarriage in this time, they don't tell people," she said.

"This may result in the profound psychological effects of early pregnancy loss being brushed under the carpet, and not openly discussed."

Farren believe says the results are proof women should receive better care after losing a baby. “At the moment, there is no routine follow-up appointment for women who have suffered a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy,” she said.

“We have checks in place for postnatal depression, but we don’t have anything in place for the trauma and depression following pregnancy loss.”

We hope that this study leads to better treatment for women who are mourning a lost pregnancy.

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