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Miscarriage symptoms

A miscarriage is the loss of a pregnancy during the first 23 weeks. The main symptoms of a miscarriage are:

  • vaginal bleeding
  • cramping and pain in your lower abdominal (stomach) area

Read more about miscarriage symptoms on the NHS website

What to do if you think you're having a miscarriage

If you have the symptoms of a miscarriage contact your doctor or the out of hours GP or if you're bleeding heavily or in pain, go to the Emergency Department.

You’ll usually be referred to the hospital for tests such a blood test and / or ultrasound scan. These tests will be able to tell you if you’re miscarrying your baby.

If a miscarriage is confirmed, your doctor will talk to you about your options to manage the end of the pregnancy.

In most cases, you’ll be able to go home where you can rest and your body will naturally pass any pregnancy tissue in a week or two. Sometimes you may be given medication to help your body do this. Sometimes a minor surgical procedure is recommended to remove the pregnancy tissue.

Taking time off work

Although you might be physically recovered from a miscarriage within a few days, you might not feel emotionally ready to go back to work until a bit later. Speak with your doctor about how long you feel you need before returning to work.

Payments if you're off work sick (Short Term Incapacity Allowance)


Having a miscarriage can be very emotionally upsetting and physically draining. You might experience feelings of shock, grief, guilt and anger. Talking about your feelings can be a good way of processing your emotions and can help you feel better.

The Miscarriage Association is a UK charity that offers support to people who have lost a baby. Their helpline +44 (0) 1924 200 799 is available Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm.

Cruse Bereavement Care offers a helpline staffed by trained bereavement volunteers who offer emotional support to anyone affected by bereavement, Their helpline +44 (0) 808 808 1677, and is available Monday and Friday, 9.30am to 5pm and Tuesday to Thursday, 9.30am to 8pm.

Trying for a baby after miscarriage

You can usually try for another baby after you’ve had one period. However you should also make sure that you're physically and emotionally ready first.

Most women who have a miscarriage go on to have a healthy pregnancy.

Multiple miscarriages

Although fairly uncommon, some women will sadly suffer from more than one miscarriage while trying for a baby. If you have three or more miscarriages in a row, speak to your doctor about next steps.

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