Researchers in Singapore have developed a new way to screen and triage women with threatened miscarriage, to increase the chances of survival of the pregnancy.
Threatened miscarriage is an abnormal vaginal bleeding and abdominal pain that occurs during pregnancy, but with the growing fetus still viable. It is common during early pregnancy and the bleeding may range from spotting to heavy bleeding. Treatment of threatened miscarriage typically involves bed rest and the use of hormones called progestogens, which act to sustain the pregnancy.
In the study, a single blood test for progesterone levels in the body was used to screen and triage women to determine the most appropriate line of management for each of them. This screening identified 240 high-risk pregnancies (women with a low progesterone levels) and 847 women with low-risk pregnancies (had normal or high levels of progesterone in the blood).
Women with high-risk pregnancies were treated with progestogens (synthetic hormones containing progesterone), preventing miscarriage in more than 70 of these women, while women with low-risk pregnancies avoided unnecessary use of progesterone.
This clinical protocol may help many women if adopted widely.