Many women report feeling isolated and alone after experiencing a miscarriage, and now the research of the Imperial College in London find that many people who suffer from one meet the diagnostic criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Reporting in the journal BMJ Open, the researchers noted in their survey of 113 women who had experienced early pregnancy loss “surprised”: The researchers found 38% of women meet criteria for probable PTSD three months after their loss.
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Women who had a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy where the fetus develops outside the uterus, were more likely to report PTSD symptoms at that moment: 45% to 18%, respectively.
Distressing or frightening events can lead to PTSD, which can involve flashbacks, nightmares, or intrusive thoughts, and is often characterized by anger, depression or insomnia. New York magazine notes that 40% of women said that the symptoms affected their relationships, and 33% said that it affected their work.
“At this moment there is no routine follow-up appointment for women who have a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy,” says lead author Dr. Jessica Farren. “We have the controls in place for the postnatal depression,” and the research suggests the same is true for those who suffer from a miscarriage.
(This country sometimes consider abortion to be murder.)
This article originally appeared on Newser: Your Miscarriage, Followed by PTSD