"Chemical pregnancy" is a term often used for miscarriages that happen so early that you barely have time to process that you are pregnant before you find out that you are having a miscarriage. Even though they happen early, chemical pregnancies can be emotionally devastating. Here are some good things to know if you or someone you love has recently had a chemical pregnancy.
A chemical pregnancy is a term for a very early miscarriage, one that usually occurs before the fifth week of gestation (less than a week after your first missed period).
In a chemical pregnancy, the only way to verify the pregnancy is through blood tests (biochemical evidence). The gestational sac never grows large enough to be visible on an ultrasound before the miscarriage happens.
Because a chemical pregnancy can look like a late period, it's normal to wonder whether an unusual period might have actually been an early miscarriage.
Although it might look like a false positive pregnancy test result, a chemical pregnancy does mean that a conception occurred -- the loss simply occurred very early.
Chemical pregnancies aren't really well understood, but most doctors believe they are caused by chromosome problems in the sperm or egg, and most don't recur. If you had a chemical pregnancy, it wasn't your fault.
Even though you might have known about the pregnancy only for a day or two, it still hurts to miscarry, and you are not alone if you are grieving deeply. Feel free to share your story -- a read those of women like you -- here.