What to Do If You Can't Get Pregnant After Your Miscarriage

You May Want to Speak With a Fertility Specialist

Woman Holding Pregnancy Test While Man Watches
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Once you've decided to try again after a miscarriage, the time it takes until you are pregnant again may feel like forever -- even if you end up conceiving right away. For couples who don't conceive right away, the wait can be unbearable. Still, given that the odds of getting pregnant in any particular month are only about 30% to 40%, even when you have sex during your fertile days, it's not necessarily a sign that anything is wrong if it takes a little bit of time to conceive again.

When You Are Having Trouble Conceiving

If you've been trying for several months, however, you might be starting to wonder if you have developed some kind of fertility problem and can't get pregnant. The guidelines are that you should seek a consultation with a fertility specialist if one of these applies to you:

  • You're under 35 and have not conceived within a year after having regular intercourse timed to coincide with ovulation
  • You're over 35 and have not conceived within six months with regular intercourse timed to coincide with ovulation
  • You have had two to three consecutive miscarriages and you haven't yet had tests for known recurrent miscarriage causes

Naturally, these are general guidelines and you should check in with a doctor sooner if you are not conceiving and have a specific concern, such as if you have irregular menstrual periods. In addition, if it also took you a long time to conceive the pregnancy that you miscarried, it may make to talk to a fertility specialist sooner rather than waiting through several more months of trying.

If you do decide to see a fertility specialist, look for an OB/GYN with experience in fertility issues or a certified reproductive endocrinologist. UCompareHealthCare has state-by-state directories for both types of specialists if you need help finding one in your area.

A Quick Look at Infertility Treatments: Ovarian Stimulation

Typically, the first step in infertility treatment is the stimulation of the ovaries using hormones, FSH and chorionic gonadotropin or clomiphene citrate.

This procedure is followed by timed insemination. The most notable effect of ovarian stimulation is multiple pregnancy. Specifically, a 2012 study by McClamrock and colleagues suggested that 28.6 percent and 9.3 percent of mothers experience twin and higher-order pregnancies, respectively.

In other words, about 10 percent of women who successfully undergo ovarian stimulation end up having 3 or more children at once. Multifetal gestation can be concerning, and currently researchers are trying to figure out how to maximize pregnancy rates while minimizing multifetal gestation.

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

Some women don't respond to ovarian stimulation and are thus candidates for in vitro fertilization (IVF). With IVF, an egg and sperm are joined in a laboratory dish. Then, about 3 to 5 days after conception this fertilized egg is transferred to the uterus.

As with other forms of assisted reproductive technologies, IVF can result in multifetal gestations. In an attempt to curb the chance of multifetal gestations, in 2013, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine revised their recommendations regarding the number embryos that should be transferred to women younger than 35 years old with favorable prognoses.

The new recommendations limit the embryo transfer to 2 embryos.


Getting Pregnant. March of Dimes. http://www.marchofdimes.com/pnhec/173_26818.asp

Macklon, N.S., J.P.M. Geraedts and B.C.J.M. Fauser. "Conception to ongoing pregnancy: the 'black box' of early pregnancy loss." Human Reproduction Update, Vol.8, No.4 pp.333-343, 2002.

Cunningham F, Leveno KJ, Bloom SL, Spong CY, Dashe JS, Hoffman BL, Casey BM, Sheffield JS. Multifetal Pregnancy. In: Cunningham F, Leveno KJ, Bloom SL, Spong CY, Dashe JS, Hoffman BL, Casey BM, Sheffield JS. eds. Williams Obstetrics, Twenty-Fourth Edition. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 2013.

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