Please note: This information was current at the time of publication. But medical information is always changing, and some information given here may be out of date. For regularly updated information on a variety of health topics, please visit, the AAFP patient education website.

Information from Your Family Doctor

Pregnancy Loss


Am Fam Physician. 2012 May 1;85(9):905.

  See related article on adverse birth outcomes.

How do I cope with pregnancy loss?

Pregnancy loss can take many different forms, from miscarriage to stillbirth to death soon after the baby is delivered. Every woman and her family will experience loss differently. There is no right or wrong way to feel after losing your baby.

Your doctor can be a good resource after a pregnancy loss. He or she can help you understand why it happened. If you need emotional support, your doctor can help you find someone to talk to. He or she can also provide resources that may be helpful for your partner, your children, and other family members.

What caused the loss?

Your doctor may need to do tests on you and your baby to try to find out what caused the pregnancy loss. Most of the time—but not always—these tests will show the cause.

What do I need to do in future pregnancies?

If you want to plan another pregnancy, talk to your doctor about how long you should wait. If a health problem caused your pregnancy loss, your doctor can help you treat the problem before you conceive again. You also may need to have more tests done before or during your next pregnancy.

Where can I find support for myself and my family?

Your doctor

A Place to Remember

Web site:

Compassionate Friends

Web site:

National SUID/SIDS Resource Center

Web site:

This handout is provided to you by your family doctor and the American Academy of Family Physicians. Other health-related information is available from the AAFP online at

This information provides a general overview and may not apply to everyone. Talk to your family doctor to find out if this information applies to you and to get more information on this subject.


Copyright © 2012 by the American Academy of Family Physicians.
This content is owned by the AAFP. A person viewing it online may make one printout of the material and may use that printout only for his or her personal, non-commercial reference. This material may not otherwise be downloaded, copied, printed, stored, transmitted or reproduced in any medium, whether now known or later invented, except as authorized in writing by the AAFP. Contact for copyright questions and/or permission requests.

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