A new research has revealed that suitable lifestyle changes could prevent at least 25% of first-time miscarriages. A study involving more than 90,000 pregnancies confirmed that the age of the mother is one of the highest risk factors. It indicates that females over the age of 30 are at higher risk of miscarrying their foetus.
The research team, from the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, made use of data taken from about 91,427 pregnancies in that country during 1996 and 2002. For research purposes, miscarriage was regarded as termination before the foetus reached the age of 22 weeks. During the study it was found that 3,177 of the overall sample ended in miscarriage.
The women were required to discuss their lifestyle habits prior to conception and during their term of pregnancy. This interview normally took place at about around the 16-week mark. The females who had already suffered a miscarriage at the time of the interview were asked about their lifestyle habits leading up to the point of miscarriage.
The study revealed that age, night shifts, obesity, being overweight, alcohol consumption and lifting in excess of 20 kilograms per day all contributed to the event. The most important risks were said to be alcohol consumption and the age of the mother.
A Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology panel of experts stated that during a scenario geared towards prevention where the mother conceived at an age between 25 and 29 years, was of normal weight throughout the pregnancy, drank no alcohol during the pregnancy, worked during normal business hours only and did not lift objects heavier than 20 kilograms, 25% of the miscarriages could be prevented.
The researchers stated that an estimated 11.4% of the miscarriages may be prevented if women limited conception to the time between the ages of 25 and 29. Nine percent of the miscarriages may be prevented if alcohol was not consumed during the pregnancy.
A University College London professor has stated that the study has many statistical limitations. It has identified potential risk factors, but should not be treated as the final word on this subject.
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