Miscarriage Misinformation on Twitter

Losing a pregnancy because of a miscarriage can be a difficult and painful experience, one that people often don’t talk about even among friends and family. Women who suffer miscarriages can feel shame and isolation. Some even blame themselves.

There are also many public misperceptions of miscarriage. For example, more than half of the respondents to a 2015 survey incorrectly believed that miscarriages occur rarely, in 5 percent or less of all pregnancies. Actually, about 15 percent to 20 percent of clinically recognized pregnancies in the U.S. end in miscarriage each year. That brings the total number of miscarriages each year to somewhere between 750,000 and 1 million.

But the perception that miscarriage is rare and not something to be talked about may be changing. Last year, celebrities including rapper Azealia Banks, the singer Halsey and celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay publicly disclosed miscarriages, following other celebrities such as Beyoncé and Mark Zuckerberg in previous years. There were also news articles in popular publications such as Time magazine and The Washington Post regarding personal experiences and the need to break the shroud of silence surrounding miscarriage.

An investigation reported on NPR grouped those 55,698 tweets into four topics: celebrity miscarriage news; op-ed articles and politicized discussions; potential causes; and personal or familial experiences.

Here are some examples of potential causes:

Potential Causes Of Miscarriage

“NIH study warns Mom’s and dad’s (!) pre-pregnancy caffeine intake may affect miscarriage risk”
“If someone becomes pregnant DO NOT TRY TO EMBARRASS THEM. There’s a life inside them and stress can cause a miscarriage, which is horrible”
“In general miscarriage is caused by help from inept midwives instead of finding qualified & experienced doctors!”
“Did you know drinking alcohol and taking drugs while you’re pregnant can help cause stillbirth miscarriage cerebral…”

If you need information on miscarriage, talk to your RE or OB-GYN. If you suffer from repeated miscarriages (recurrent pregnancy loss), request a consultation with one of RPMG’s expert physicians. There is hope. The encouraging news from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine is that even after having three miscarriages, a woman has a 60%-80% chance of conceiving and carrying a full term pregnancy.

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