Chemical Pregnancy

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If you have begun to miscarry, and hadn’t yet been able to hear your baby’s heartbeat with a doppler, your doctor might have said that you are having a chemical pregnancy.

This means that it’s a very early miscarriage.

Related: please read our Honoring Uncertainty

This very early miscarriage–or the name of it–doesn’t make your baby any less real.  At 5 weeks gestation, just about the time you may have found out that you were pregnant, your baby was about the size of a sesame seed.  And, at 5 weeks gestation, your tiny baby’s heart has already begun to beat.  It’s just too small to be heard on a Doppler.

While identifying your baby at this stage is probably just not going to happen, because of everything that is delivered during the miscarriage, including uterine lining and lots of blood, your baby is real.  Your feelings about your baby are real.

You will likely have a natural miscarriage, or natural delivery.  Rarely, artificial induction or a D&C may be recommended.  You can learn about these different birth methods here:

You are invited to share your story here as well: please remember that sharing your story at stillbirthday is a way to express your feelings and share your experiences with other mothers – it is not to diagnose, treat or answer any medical questions.

You might visit our farewell celebrations for ideas to celebrate your baby.

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  1. Leigh Anne says:

    I was afraid to read this description. Afraid it would tell me there was never a baby in the first place. There was a baby. There was a moment of realizing I was late, a positive test, a call to the midwife, a blessing from my father in law, one day of morning sickness. And then the realization that I was no longer nauseated, the blood after wiping, the look in my husband’s eyes after I showed him, the drive to the hospital on valentines day…the silent phone call I made to my husband, the kind nurse who held me and stroked my hair as I weeped and asked to go home, the pain and bleeding the next day, the phone call to my mother and best friends, the lady that congratulated me before I was able to inform her of the loss, the two acquaintances with similar due dates, and this week, I should have a newborn. Baby Valentine 2/14/12-2/14/12.

  2. i had just found out i was pregnant a few days ago. i woke up with bleeding and cramping and called my doctor right away. we did a hcg level and it dropped to a 1. when i got that phone call my heart shattered. i never got to see him/her. never heard a heartbeat. even though i had known a couple days i was over joyed and it was MY baby. i have 2 healthy children at home and couldnt wiat for number 3. we already had the name picked out for a girl it was Arianna Sky, and for a boy either Blaine or Kayden. I have decided to name my angel baby Kayden as it is gender neutral and it was a name me and hubby picked!

  3. This website has been a great comfort reading other womens stories…I had a miscarriage at 5 weeks last saturday. I thought it was just stress causing me to be late, but when I looked back at my charts, realized I had ovulated late. I had the same symptoms as I did when I had my first LO…bleeding gums, headaches, heartburn, lost a few lbs and cramping that came and went. I ended up with back pain, cramps & bleeding right at 5 weeks, & actually caught the baby on tissue, about the size of a green pea. I couldn’t believe I had dismissed all the signs up til then…I miss a little person that I didn’t even get to hear their heartbeat, or see their little wiggles on a screen.

  4. After a long road of trying to get pregnant I finally was. Then the tests started to get lighter instead of darker. Note less than 48 hours later I’m bleeding. All that is left of my baby is a few positive pregnancy tests.

  5. My husband and I have been trying for 4 years. We had just consulted with a fertility specialist. Last week I had a feeling I was pregnant, I took a test on Friday and it was positive! We were so excited. I called the doctor and they ordered a blood hcg. The number was low at 24. On Sunday I had a feeling something wasn’t right so I went to the ER and found out my hcg had dropped. I have never been so sad. Tonight, the cramps have started and the spotting has started. I feel so sad and feel like I want to do something to honor my sweet little baby.
    I feel like everyone thinks I am crazy because I was barely pregnant and yet it hurts so bad.


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