Can Prometrium Prevent Miscarriage?

Pregnant woman concerned about miscarriage

If you have a history of miscarriages, you'll know that using Prometrium to prevent miscarriage is quite often a course of action. It can be taken orally, vaginally, or by injection and is often prescribed when you're trying to conceive.

Why Use Prometrium to Prevent Miscarriage

Prometrium is basically a progesterone supplement sometimes used in conjunction with estrogen supplements but not to be used while you're pregnant or nursing. This is because of the inconclusive evidence regarding its effects on a developing baby. It's used to help keep the uterine lining ready for the implantation of a fertilized egg. Using Prometrium to prevent miscarriage is done both prior to conceptionand after you conceive.

How It's Used

Your doctor will be able to advise you on the appropriate schedule for using Prometrium as an infertility treatment. It has to be prescribed by a physician, so you'll have plenty of opportunity to set up an ideal treatment schedule with your health care provider. You will also be able to discuss which method works best for you: pills, vaginal suppositories, or injections.

Generally, it is meant to be taken at night, once a day for the first twelve days of your twenty-eight day cycle. Other uses for Prometrium (such as restoring your period) require a different schedule.

Why Miscarriages Can Occur

Regarding progesterone, it's hard to decipher whether low progesterone levels cause a miscarriage, or if the miscarriage is inevitable so the body doesn't bother producing an adequate amount. Low levels of progesterone during the first three months are a sign of an impending miscarriage.

Doctors will most often argue that low progesterone levels do not cause miscarriages. Rather, there are other things that cause them and the low levels of the hormone just mean the pregnancy wasn't healthy to begin with.

Fertility specialist Mark Perloe, MD, lists other issues that may cause miscarriage:

Causes of Miscarriage
Potential Cause Explanation
Hormonal Causes High levels of hormones LH, FHS (related to the age of the mother), or high prolactin levels
Chromosomal Causes This can be related to the mother or the father. Families with this cause for miscarriage can have normal pregnancies, too. You won't always necessarily miscarry.
Immunity Antibodies could be attacking the attachment of the placenta to the uterus. In this case, your body doesn't realize it's pregnant, per se, but thinks instead that the pregnancy is a foreign invader, like a virus.

When it comes to miscarriages, Prometrium could be just what you need to help prep your uterine lining for the implantation of the fertilized egg. Keep in mind, though, it's regrettably not a miracle cure. As listed above, there could be several reasons for miscarriage that don't relate to progesterone levels.

Side Effects of the Drug

Prometrium doesn't come without side effects. Here are a few you may experience if you take Prometrium to prevent miscarriage:

  • Back pain
  • Breast tenderness or pain
  • Cough
  • Cramps
  • Depression or irritability
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Changes in weight

Some side effects are more serious than others and you should contact your doctor if you experience any of the following:

  • Severe allergic reactions (make sure you don't take Prometrium if you're allergic to any of the ingredients or if you have a peanut allergy since it contains peanut oil)
  • Double vision or other changes in vision
  • Yellow eyes or skin
  • Severe pain in the stomach, chest, or head
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Speech problems
  • Vaginal bleeding to exceed "breakthrough bleeding" amounts

Other Words of Caution

Have a complete physical exam before jumping right onto the Prometrium boat. This rules out health problems that could conflict with the medication. It also will confirm that Prometrium is a viable treatment for you.

Extra Advice

There are a number of sources on the web where you can go to discuss Prometrium and its effects. Here are a few:

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Can Prometrium Prevent Miscarriage?