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Stillbirth Related Questions

Stillbirth is an occurrence of fetal death while it is still in the uterus. In most cases, the fetus is usually full term at the time of death. Although the reasons for stillbirth are still unknown, there are many possible causes that have been found through extensive testing. Certain people tend to confuse stillbirth with a miscarriage. Miscarriages generally occur in the first trimester as opposed to stillbirths that usually happen in the last trimester. To learn more about stillbirth and how to prevent it, take a look at the questions below that have been answered by the Experts.

How common is it for someone to have a stillbirth cause by E. Coli of the placenta?

E. coli of the placenta is almost never heard of but it is possible. In a rare case, the mother could become infected with E. coli from meat that hasn't been cooked well enough, by eating fruits and vegetables that haven’t been washed properly or handling animals or the feces of animals that may contain E. coli. Once the E. coli has been contracted, it may be possible for the mother to pass it on to the fetus through the placenta. The bacteria would then cause excessive bleeding which would lead to a miscarriage.

Many people who experience severe cases of E. coli usually become extremely dehydrated. Dehydration can cause a pregnant woman to go into premature labor. However, the chances of this situation occurring twice to the same person are highly unlikely. To avoid E.coli, there are many things a person can do such as eat fully cooked meat, wash raw fruit and vegetables before eating and frequently wash hands especially after touching farm or zoo animals.

When is it safe to have sex, exercise or get pregnant after having a stillbirth?

In many cases, a woman is able to resume her normal activities within two weeks of a stillbirth and /or a D&C if there aren’t any tears and she has healed well. Usually the best way to gauge this is to listen to the body. If the woman feels well enough to exercise and she takes it slow, there shouldn't be any issues.

If the woman is unsure about how far her body has healed from the stillbirth, there is usually a follow up visit to the doctor scheduled after two weeks and the woman can voice any concerns then. As for getting pregnant again, while a woman is sometimes able to become pregnant soon after a stillbirth, it is usually not recommended to try this until at least three months after a stillbirth so that the body is given enough time to revert to its normal state.

Is it normal to be bleeding and having severe back pain 4.5 weeks after having a stillbirth?

These symptoms are common for a woman to experience after a stillbirth or any type of pregnancy/delivery. Some of the causes for this are that the body may not have been prepared to deliver, there could have been an infection or sometimes tissue may have been retained from the placenta. In this scenario, the woman would be advised to see her doctor and have a pelvic exam/ultrasound. While many women use a birth control pill to regulate the bleeding, the doctor could prescribe another medication to stop the bleeding if the woman is trying to conceive.

Can Down syndrome be the cause of a stillbirth?

This is possible since it has been found that stillbirth and miscarriages occur in 80% of couples who have babies with Down syndrome. When analyzing stillbirths, 8-13% of them were found to have chromosomal abnormalities. Among this, Down Syndrome was a commonly found problem. However, it is still not clear as to why Down syndrome causes stillbirth and miscarriages to occur since it doesn’t seem to be any fault of the parents at all.

Stillbirth can cause great trauma to both parents. Many questions arise when this occurs since parents often feel responsible for the loss. However, there are many causes of stillbirth and most are out of a parent’s control. If you have any questions or concerns about stillbirth and its causes, get in touch with an Expert for medical clarity and information based on your case history.
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