Understanding Late Term Pregnancy Loss

November 17th, 2014
Donor Egg Late Term Pregnancy Loss

Here at Donor Egg Bank USA, we are preparing to launch a new page on our website called Fulfilling Dreams. Our objective is to encourage those on the journey with both success stories as well as stories of individuals who are still positive and pursuing their dream despite failed cycles. 

As I was pulling together stories for the new page, my heart sank when I opened my e-mail this morning. A baby had been lost at 20 weeks. Losing a baby at any point is devastating. I can hardly imagine the challenges of losing a baby that may have already been named, had a nursery waiting and had delighted in Mommy belly pats and loving care.

A late term pregnancy loss, occurring in the second trimester and before 20 weeks of pregnancy, is hardly a miscarriage. This type of pregnancy loss is one in which a baby had become a member of the family. The worries of loss that plague the first trimester are greatly lessened upon entering the second trimester. Of all miscarriages, only one percent happen later in a pregnancy.

The chart below reviews the increased risk of chromosomal disorders when both the egg and uterus are used to conceive and deliver a baby by a woman over age 36. 

Chromosomal Abnormality Rates at Amniocentesis and in Live-born Infants
Mother's Age Risk of Down's Syndrome Risk of Chromosomal Disorder
36 1/289 1/127
37 1/224 1/130
38 1/173 1/102
39 1/136 1/83
40 1/206 1/66
41 1/82 1/53
42 1/63 1/42
43 1/49 1/33
44 1/38 1/26
45 1/30 1/21

Thankfully, for those of us over age 40 using a donor egg, the most significant risk factor to chromosomal abnormalities has been removed. While no one can guarantee a successful birth, the odds are in our favor.

Donor eggs can reduce the risk of late term pregnancy loss to nearly that of a woman in her 20’s and early 30’s. But as we know, pregnancy comes with health risks. By using a donor egg, complications associated with late term pregnancy loss may be less associated with genetic issues and more associated with age-related issues such as elevated blood pressure, gestational diabetes, premature labor and bleeding disorders.

During a three year study with recipients aged 25 years to their late 40s, the success of donor egg fertility treatment was remarkably constant. Fewer embryos were transferred yet higher rates of embryo implantation resulted. Patients in the higher age bracket experienced only a small increase of pregnancy loss, but also had declining implantation, pregnancy and delivery rates.

The great reduction in late term pregnancy loss due to chromosomal abnormality when using a donor’s egg is very encouraging, and should allow men and women to rest easy at night. Nonetheless, the e-mail I read this morning reminds us that donor egg does not reduce the risk to zero.

When a late term pregnancy loss occurs, we can only offer our heartfelt sympathies and support. We wish we could take the pain away, but that would be impossible. What we can do is offer some financial insurance through the Assured Refund Plan®. This program offers multiple attempts to have a baby and the guarantee of either a live born baby or a 100% refund. While financial assurance of a baby or your money back does nothing to wipe away the tears or lessen the grief, our hope is that it does allow for a more relaxed pregnancy and the hope of a new cycle after a pregnancy loss.

Our hearts go out to those of you who may have experienced a late term pregnancy loss. We send you our sincerest condolences and hopes that you will be able to move forward on the journey.

Comments

question, why can one not have PGD testing with Assured Refund Plan? would this not help with less chromosome related problem?

Submitted by Dana 1 year, 6 months ago

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