'blighted ovum' miscarriage and embryo quality

Discussion group for all topics related to infertility including preparation for pregnancy, causes, investigation and treatment of infertility.
Post Reply
Posts: 45
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2005 4:07 pm
Location: Cambridgeshire

'blighted ovum' miscarriage and embryo quality

Post by yogibunny » Wed Mar 15, 2006 3:45 pm

I'm current six weeks post ET and after suffering with severe OHSS have now had it confirmed that the pregnancy is not viable due to 'blighted ovum' or 'unembyonic pregnancy'. I gather this is a fairly common cause of m/c in early pregnancy due to things like embryo quality etc.
I'm now waiting for the m/c to happen and hoping I don't have to have any more intervention for this stage...

Anyway my question / concern now is - surely if this egg was abnormal doesn't it stand to reason that the others collected at the same time will be of a similar quality? What if all of the frosties result in the same ending? Any reasurrance appreciated.....

Me: 34 ; DH: 35
Clomid 2003 - 1 daughter (now 3)
ttc: 18months
recent discovery of post ceasarian infection damage requiring IVF as only chance.
1st IVF Jan 06 - Test date 15 Feb 06!


Valued Contributor
Posts: 2784
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 4:40 pm

Post by DebraP » Wed Mar 15, 2006 4:53 pm

Angela, I'm sorry to see that you and I are going through the same wretched experience.

I expect to have my (by then) nearly 8 week pregnancy confirmed as 'blighted ovum' this Friday. Have you tried googling the subject? there's SO much out there and it confirms that this is very common. Frequently the signs are slow hcg, low growth rates of the egg sac, no fetal pole and no heartbeat (the latter two at the 7wk+ mark). You might want to ask this next question directly with your clinic/doctors as it looks like there's no 'automatic' m/c eg. that it might take a long time for your body to deal with this 'naturally'. I read upto 3m, hence most people being strongly advised to have a D&C - to both physically and mentally move on. If anyone knows more about it, please chip in. I too would rather wait it out than have a D&C.

Re. your question re. the rest. I don't know. I too have 2 frosties from this cycle. I've not read that all eggs from one EC are of identical quality, I always thought each was highly individual. Perhaps we can both ask our respective clinics and compare notes? When do you see your clinic next?

Sorry you're going through this, it's crap isn't it?
Me: 44, DH: 31
Game Over.
Dates: Aug 02 - May 06
Tries: 5 fresh + 4 frozen.
Results: 1 daughter, 2 m/c, 1 ectopic.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 1164
Joined: Sun May 15, 2005 4:49 pm
Location: Ontario, Canada

Post by DeniseM » Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:08 pm

I went through this and within a week of stopping the progesterone, my body naturally m/c.

I think sometimes the progesterone masks what the body would normally do when it interprets signals like blighted ovum. A natural m/c produces less damage and scarring then a dnc, so if you can wait for a little, its probably the best idea.

I named my baby, even though science told me it wasn't there. It helped immensely with the grieving process, and my baby still has a special place in my heart.

God go with both of you, the next bit is hard.
IUI twins ~ July 2006
IUI singleton ~ due Jan 15 2009

Posts: 482
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 7:14 pm
Location: Nottingham

Post by angelamw » Wed Mar 15, 2006 5:18 pm

Debra and Angela

So sorry for both of you. My thoughts are with you both


me 35 DH 34
blocked tubes 95
ttc 6 years
1st IUI feb 06 -ve
2nd IUI mar 06 -ve

Posts: 203
Joined: Sun Nov 06, 2005 5:56 pm

Post by BecP » Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:05 pm

I am so sorry.

My first miscarriage was a blighted ovum. No embryo or heartbeat detected, just a sac that was the right size for the gestation, just nothing in it.

I was devasted. I opted for a D&C as was so ill with morning sickness, I couldn't bear the thought of waiting potentially another month to miscarry naturally whilst vomitting constantly. I was also off work and didn't want to delay going back.

Do whatever feels right. I pushed strongly for a D&C as I wanted the experience to be over. However, others I am sure wait for things to happen naturally. My blighted ovum had well and truely implanted, I wasn't on any progesterone supporting it, so I think I would have gone on for a good few more weeks.

It's truely a horrible experience and I am so sorry you are going through this.

As for quality of embryos and 'why' didn't this one work. I've asked soooo many different doctors. Not one of them could say why it occured. As one doc put it 'it's such a complex process with all the genetics coming together, sometimes it just doesn't happen quite right, and there's nothing you could have done any differently'.

The one thing I have learnt is not to worry too much about why it happened. If I had another one (heaven forbid) I would question the quality of my embryos, but not after one. It is so common. Please don't beat yourself about it now. I think you have to just put it down to 'it wasn't meant to be' - as tough as that sounds.

Look after yourself. Hope you manage to make a decision

My age 33, DH 32
Nat pg & m/c @ 8.5 wks Jan 05
IVF Nov 05 m/c @ 5 wks
3 x IUI 2006 all -ve
IVF Oct 06... BFP! A little boy due 6 July!


Posts: 254
Joined: Tue Dec 06, 2005 10:43 pm
Location: Birmingham, England

Post by sophie » Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:27 pm

So sorry to hear your news. I too had a blighted ovum. Unfortunately for me it was a natural pg so 1st scan wasn't until 16 weeks, by which time I assumed I was normally pg. I had to wait another 2 weeks to miscarry, but their were complications so I had D&C. I personally would elect to have D&C asap. It's similar to EC, only you're asleep and it takes probably less time to do.

Regards to the quality of your other eggs, I am under the impression that a blighted ovum is just unlucky and it doesn't reflect the overall quality of your eggs. I suspect the rest will be fine.

Hope you get through the next few months okay. Take lots of care and once again, I am SO sorry to hear your news,

Sophie x
Pituitary Tumour, PCOS
'01 - DD born
'02 - miscarriage
clomid X6 negative
IVF '05 - OHSS 13 embies frozen
FET, Feb06 - negative
FET, April06 - cancelled 2 days before ET
FET, ET: June06 - fingers crossed

Posts: 729
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 10:58 am
Location: Cheshire

Post by Macca8 » Wed Mar 15, 2006 8:37 pm

Debra & Angela,

My first miscarriage 10 years ago was a blighted ovuum. I was 14 weeks pregnant (naturally) and all excited about my scan. It was found on the scan that there was no fetus but a huge sac. Due to the size of the sac they opted for an ERPC, which is like a D&C but kinder. It flushes you out rather than scraping and you are not in pain post op. They couldn't get the sac out so they gave me an inducement pessary which worked very quickly.

They told me it was very common for first pregnancies more so because the body does not always know what to do, so it gets some of it right, sac, etc but the womb does not feed the fetus to allow growth. They are more commonly found at the 6-8 week stage but as I didn't register my pregnancy until I was 8 weeks it was found much later.

I noticed on www.carefertility.co.uk website that they believe a blighted ovuum can be a result of immunology problems.

I'm so sorry for your loss, I understand how devasting this is. I have had 2 @ 8 & 14 week miscarriages and 1 @ 5 week ones and nearly all for different reasons. Please don't lose hope though. At least you are getting pregnant and you will again. Have faith and believe in yourselves.

Lisa XXX
Me 37, DH 51
Twin Boys - Sean Alexander & Samuel Robert

Valued Contributor
Posts: 2784
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2003 4:40 pm

Post by DebraP » Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:34 am

Angela, I had my follow up today. My egg sac has further reduced in size (to 6mm from 9mm) and my Dr. says to expect to m/c in the next 1-2 weeks. I have to stop progesterone immediately. He said if the sac had not reduced then he'd suggest a D&C as it might mean my body would continue to think itself pregnant and not start a natural m/c.

I asked about the egg batch/quality issue. He thought it a very interesting question and said to the best of his knowledge, there's no link in quality between the eggs collected at the same time.

best of luck,
Me: 44, DH: 31
Game Over.
Dates: Aug 02 - May 06
Tries: 5 fresh + 4 frozen.
Results: 1 daughter, 2 m/c, 1 ectopic.

sue e
Posts: 968
Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2004 9:03 pm

Post by sue e » Sun Mar 19, 2006 10:55 am

Debra & Angela,

So sorry you are both having to go through this,

thinking of you both


sue e xx
Age 33 dh 34 Married Nov 03 /ectopic dec 03
1st ICSI start July 05, +ive Hpt 10th oct / m/c
FET Feb - +ive

Post Reply