Chemical pregnancies can be emotionally trying. You received a positive pregnancy test, and joy immediately filled your heart. Unfortunately, right around the time when your menstrual cycle would appear, you start to bleed and lose the pregnancy. You are left wondering when do you ovulate after chemical pregnancy while sorting through all of the emotions.
What is a Chemical Pregnancy?
I first heard the term chemical pregnancy in October 2013, when I had my very first one. We were trying to conceive our third child, and I took a few pregnancy tests before my cycle was due. They came back positive, and we were overjoyed! The joy didn’t last long.
A chemical pregnancy is an early miscarriage before the 5th or 6th week of pregnancy. They typically take place within a week of discovering that you are pregnant.
Don’t let the name fool you! A chemical pregnancy is still a pregnancy. You were pregnant, but you miscarried the baby earlier on during the pregnancy. Fertilization and implantation took place, so a pregnancy occurred.
What Causes a Chemical Pregnancy?
When egg and sperm meet, a zygote forms from the combination of chromosomes. The zygote starts to grow through rapid cell division.
It is during this process that a mistake may happen, whether it is creating too many chromosomes or not enough.
These types of mistakes are random and can happen with any pregnancy and anyone. While experts have no way of pinpointing the exact cause of all chemical pregnancies, chromosomal abnormalities are believed to account for most losses.
Other issues can cause chemical pregnancies as well. You might have an abnormality in your uterus, such as a fibroid or polyps. Hormone deficiencies and pelvic infections can cause an early miscarriage.
Another reason for a chemical pregnancy is where implantation took place. Once a sperm fertilizes an egg, the fertilized egg begins its journey down the fallopian tubes towards the uterus, the goal for implantation.
At times, a fertilized egg can implant into the fallopian tube instead. These are called ectopic pregnancies, and our bodies can sometimes end these naturally. At the same time, our bodies can reject a properly implanted egg because it is viewed as a foreign entity.
Are Chemical Pregnancies Common?
You might be worried that something is wrong with you, especially if you’ve had several chemical pregnancies. Don’t fret. Chemical pregnancies occur so early in the pregnancy that many women have no idea that they were pregnant.
If you aren’t trying to conceive a child, there is no reason to take a pregnancy test so early! Instead, you might assume your menstrual cycle was just a few days off.
Chemical pregnancies account for up to 75 percent of all miscarriages, or so experts believe! It is hard to pinpoint the exact number because so many women never tell their practitioners about the loss. They had no idea themselves!
When Will I Ovulate after Chemical Pregnancy?
If you are trying to conceive, knowing when to expect ovulation is important.
Miscarriages can often delay the start of ovulation, but chemical pregnancies don’t typically affect your menstrual cycle. That is because the loss occurs so early in gestation.
Most women, myself included, will have a normal menstrual cycle after a chemical pregnancy. A normal cycle means that you should ovulate 14 days after you have the early miscarriage. It could be a few days later, especially if that is your norm.
Some women might have a strange cycle afterward, meaning that your cycle might come a bit later or earlier than average. Don’t worry; this is normal as well! There is no perfect science as to when your body will ovulate after a chemical pregnancy.
When you ovulate after an early miscarriage will depend on the level of HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) in your body.
HCG is produced by the developing embryo once it successfully implants after fertilization. Once the pregnancy ends, the level of HCG begins to drop. Your body soon will go back to normal, resuming its normal functions. This process can take a week or two; then your body is ready to ovulate.
Life after a Chemical Pregnancy
After my chemical pregnancy, I struggled to understand what I should feel.
Some people think you shouldn’t feel sad because it was so early in pregnancy that a gestational sac is typically not visible on an ultrasound. I know I felt sad, and you should feel whatever comes naturally! Pregnancy is more than the size of the baby; it also involves our emotions and excitement.
Unlike other miscarriages, there is no reason to wait to try to conceive. Some doctors may advocate for you to wait, so speak to your OBGYN, especially if you need time to grieve.
There is no evidence that a pregnancy directly after a chemical pregnancy is at any higher risk. Chances are everything will go perfectly!