Can High Homocysteine Levels Cause Miscarriage?

A miscarriage is cited when the body spontaneously aborts a fetus before the 24th week of pregnancy. At week 25 the process is referred to as a stillborn, according to Dr. Marilyn Glenville, M.D.

Miscarriage is relatively common, with as many as 70% of all fertilized eggs failing to implant or grow in the uterus, eventually being expelled by the body. In the vast majority of the time, an early miscarriage goes unnoticed since it occurs before a pregnancy is even suspected, let alone verified.

There are a lot of things that can cause a miscarriage, but on of the most common miscarriage risk factors now being investigated within the field of infertility and pregnancy are high Homcoysteine levels in women. A common amino acid in the body, Homocysteine is used by the body to help clot blood in the event of an injury. Without it you could bleed to death from something as simple as a paper cut. While this makes Homocysteine a completely necessary chemical in the body, levels that are too high (which are characterized by levels 10), can cause severe fertility problems and even the end to an otherwise viable pregnancy.

When levels of this sulfar-like acid grows too high in the bloodstream, Hypercoagulation (extreme blood clotting), may occur. This can be extremely dangerous to a pregnancy since it can cause small blood clots to form throughout the body, but especially in the uterus and placenta, where they can cut off life-giving oxygen and nutrients to the growing fetus. If left untreated, this will ultimately result in the death of the fetus and a miscarriage.

To make matters worse, Hypercoagualtion can put the mother’s health and life in jeopardy also, increasing her risk for a fatal hart attack or stroke.

When determining if Homocysteine levels are high enough to endanger a pregnancy, most physicians use levels studied by researchers in Norway, who reported a 38% increase in miscarriages among women with Homocysteine levels above 10-10.7.

Homocysteine Blood Reference Ranges

Gender
Age
Lower Limit
Upper Limit
Unit
Elevated
Therapeutic Target
Female
12-19 years
3.3
7.2
μmol/L
>10.4
<6.3
Female
>60
4.9
11.6
μmol/L
>10.4
<6.3
Male
12-19 years
4.3
9.9
μmol/L
>11.4
<6.3
Male
>60
5.9
15.3
μmol/L
>10.4
<6.3

But miscarriage isn’t the only risk to pregnant women and their babies when it comes to higher-than-normal Homocysteine levels.  Pre-eclampsia (dangerously high blood pressure) and premature birth rates are also higher among high Homocysteine patients.  As a matter of fact, women have a five times greater chance of developing pre-eclampsia (and thus giving birth to premature infarcts) with Homocysteine levels about 10 than those who don’t.

Homocysteine Concerns

Have You Been Told That Your Homocysteine Levels Are Elevated?

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There are a variety of factors which could raise Homocysteine levels in pregnant women, according to recent research, but most evidence supports the finding that  women with a MTHFR Gene Mutation are much more likely to suffer with the disorder. That would imply that having genetic testing done to prescreen women for C677T could help to save a large number of miscarriages from happening all because of high Homocysteine overload.  For any woman who has experienced a repeated miscarriage with no other cause being found, researchers urge the genetic test to check for a predisposition of the disease.

In the event the gene mutation is found, Homocysteine levels can be monitored before and during a pregnancy, with medications given to keep levels at a more normal – and safer – level.

Source

It may sound like a complicated endeavor – keeping these amino acid levels in check. But, honestly, it has a fairly easy fix: vitamin therapy. Folic, Acid, B6 and B12 vitamins all have the ability to convert Homocysteine in the body into other more usable chemicals, thus keeping a Homocysteine overload at bay. This is good news for the thousands of women suffering with the disorder. Simply taking 400-1,000 mg of folic acid; 10-50 mg of B6 and 50-300 mg. of B12 each day, along with Vitamin E and zinc can all work to lower your Homocysteine levels and keep blood thin enough to avoid excessive clotting, especially in the uterus. Care must be taken however, not to thin the blood too much and cause bleeding and hemorrhage.

Although a fairly dangerous disorder, Homocysteine is nonetheless treatable, making it one of those roadblocks to parenthood that can be easily overcome, making it possible for the pregnancy you dream about to indeed become a reality.

What Next?

I hope you found this article helpful. If you end up having any questions I would suggest for you to join the Natural Fertility Community and post them there. Not only will you have access to natural fertility speciallists, but you can also get feedback and support from women who are going through the same experience as you.


I wish you the best on your journey and look forward to hearing about your BFP!


All the best,
Hethir Rodriguez

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