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What Should a 4-6-Week Miscarriage Be Like?

This was a Facebook question I thought would translate well here. Here’s how the thread unfolded. 

A mama asks: What should a 4-6 week miscarriage be like? (bleeding, cramping, clots, etc.) 

CDM: Mine was like a normal period, but I'm not sure if that is the norm or not. Had I not taken a test on a hunch I would just assumed it was my period starting a little late. Sorry for your loss, mama. 

HH: I just miscarried at 4w5d. It was heavier than normal, lots of larger clots (dime to nickel size), and painful cramps. I never have clots or more than light cramps. I also had a migraine that lasted 3 days. 

SMP: Please visit http://stillbirthday.com/. There's a lot of info there about what mother's go through, symptoms, and support for when this happens as well as thousands of mother told stories. Stillbirthday also lists doulas for moms in this situation and we are all very nurturing and caring. Sending good thoughts for this poster. 

MA: Sorry to piggyback on this question, but could answers please also include a 7-8 week miscarriage? Thank you. 

BO’B: All of the above.. but they can be so different for everyone.. I think even the two-week difference of 4 weeks to 6 weeks changes things. My 6.5 week miscarriage was like a very heavy and very crampy (VERY emotional) period, with a definite day of passing larger clots and greyish matter. Probably two weeks total. 

KL-D: Mine at 5w1d was much heavier than a period and longer. I bled for at least 10 days on and off. I also passed some obvious tissue with the clots. It will depend on the reason probably (blighted ovum/empty sac/chemical pregnancy will probably be less bleeding and clots than a clinical pregnancy with a fetal pole observed, but I'm just guessing there, mine have all been clinical.) 

Also sorry for your loss. It sucks. 

SCM: It'll be an extra crampy period, will probably last a few days longer than normal. I've got six of those under my belt. ((hug)) 

MW: Just had mine in July....nobody told me what it would be like and I thought the unstoppable bleeding for days and days enough to back up all the plumbing in my house (it was a mess) must have been normal since nobody would tell me ANYTHING. It wasn't. If anything seems wrong it probably is.... go to the ER and MAKE them bring in the on call OB. It took 3 visits before I finally forced them to do something and the OB is the only one who could finally tell me I had miscarried 4 weeks earlier and had to go in for an emergency D & C. The regular ER docs didn't care enough to look even when I asked and it could have been MUCH worse. PLEASE be seen if it seems excessive. 

KT: Like the worst period of my life, for so many reasons. 

NS: mine at 6w was like this. cramps worse than usual, bleeding heavy, a day longer. feeling down emotionally. 

KLD: My 8.5 week one was worse, I lost a lot of tissue and a week after the initial loss, when I'd almost stopped bleeding, I had another big bleed and lost the tiniest, saddest placenta ever. (I also laid in a supply of zofran and oxy when we saw the ultrasound where the baby was gone, and spent the worst of it in a haze. I recommend that strategy if at all possible.) 

ALB: I miscarried at 6 weeks with no symptoms at all. A check up at 10 weeks showed no heartbeat, growth only to 6 weeks. I had a scheduled D&C, but began to spontaneously bleed that day. They still performed the D&C, which I agreed to, thinking it would shorten my bleeding and let me begin to heal. I didn't realize I would bleed even longer. So sorry for all your losses, reading brings it back, even after 12 years ♥ 

SC: My 6 week mc was crampy, clotty, and long-lasting. I bled (moderately like a period) for about 3 weeks and I tested positive for hcg and felt pregnant for a month after the bleeding started. My 12 week miscarriage (baby measured 9 weeks) was full on labor with short but intense contractions every 15 seconds until my water broke and the baby was born (then I hemorrhaged and things got SERIOUS really quickly. Please do not hesitate to get medical help of the bleeding is really heavy or you get a temperature (I bled through a super maxi pad in less than 5 minutes... If you go through more than one an hour- get help!). Sorry for your losses, everyone! Pregnancyloss.info and misdiagnosedmiscarriage.com are also helpful. 

CS: Mama- whoever you are, I went through one in February. You may email me at acaringpresence at gmail dot com. I was just a day short of 6w. 

MA: Thank you and I'm sorry, K. I have 2 embryos that are implanted but not viable, I'm trying to decide whether to wait for things to end naturally or book a D&C. 

KS: I bled for 3 weeks with my first miscarriage, horrible cramps and heavy period flow bleeding for the first week, medium flow for the 2nd and light during the 3rd. I passed at least 3 clots bigger than a quarter. I also felt very tired and weak. (Not positive of how many weeks). With my 2nd MC at 5 weeks it only lasted a week and there wasn't many sizable clots but fairly heavy bleeding for a few days, turns out I lost a twin, the other survived. 

SM: Ladies, thanks for answering a very sensitive question. This has been very helpful. There has been no information where I've looked. I am nursing my 8 month old son so I also ask if anyone has had an early miscarriage while nursing? Did it affect your milk supply at all? I estimate that I was around 5 weeks with an unplanned pregnancy and I have lost it. As for my milk supply it has dipped some but not enough to upset my baby. 

KL-D: So sorry, M. It's something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy. Mine were IVF pregnancies, too (sounds like yours are.) ::hugs:: 

MA: Yes they are K, thanks for your info (and hugs). 

HH: I am still nursing my daughter. She will be 2 on the 26th. She nurses 8 times a day still. I did notice a dip, but I normally do before my period begins anyway. It's enough where she notices (wants to nurse longer and more frequent), but it picked right back up. 

I miscarried 8 days ago. My supply was low for about 3 days, like normal. 

SC: Both my miscarriages were while nursing my 1 year old and I didn't notice a significant difference in supply. I was very glad I was still nursing so that I didn't have empty arms after the losses! 

HW: I miscarried at 6-7 weeks. It felt like labor from Friday to Sunday. Normal period amount with some large clots including what looked like a sac (I scooped it out of the toilet). BIG HUGS! There is no right or wrong. Just be gentle with yourself. So sorry. 

ES: I have some thoughts I will be back to share. Barb actually saved my life when I had a cytotec induced, missed miscarriage, at 16 weeks 3 days( baby measured 8wks 3 days upon ultrasound confirmation) more of my thoughts to follow shortly. 

NgM: That was flippin' terrifying, Beth. Oh, I remember it like it was yesterday, too. 

JM: I was nursing 21-month old twins when I had a miscarriage at 13 weeks. I went with a d/c option and it didn't really affect my milk supply. The anesthesiologist suggested I wait 24 hours to nurse my girls. My nurslings were older though and it wasn't an issue to hold them off. When I had a miscarriage at about 5 weeks, it was like a very bad, very long period and I nursed my 1-year old through it with no issues. Many hugs your way ! 

JU-M: I had a D and C several years ago. I was just over 10w, but embryo only measured 6w. I opted for a D and C for several reasons. I had light bleedings/spotting for several days with some minor cramping, but that's all. 

SDC: My 6wk m/c started like a light period, then I passed one large clot (the size of a prune) & I knew I'd miscarried ‘cause I felt my uterus sag like after a birth. I bled for a few more days but it was never as heavy as a period. 

NgM: I can't thank you all enough for y'all's kind sharing. You're so loving and gentle with each other sometimes... my heart just melts at your tenderness. 

SM: I found out at 10 weeks that baby no longer had a heartbeat, and was measuring 8ish weeks. Declined a D&C. Didn't miscarry for another week, with spotting off and on. Once miscarriage started, it was a gush of blood followed by an egg-sized clot and another gush of blood, every 5 minutes or so, for over 7 hours. I was feeling really badly... on the verge of passing out, high heart rate, etc. I ended up in ER, pumped full of fluids, with low blood pressure/high heart rate. Then I ended up needing a D&C anyway, because there was still retained tissue with blood flow. After surgery, I had light bleeding for a few days. 

NgM: I just re-posted Beth’s story

AW: Hugs to the mamas who asked for this info. 

My three were all between 4 and 6 weeks and every one was different. The first was a surprise; I just had a bad backache and when I went to the bathroom I noticed a bit of blood and then a small sac slid out. The second was long and drawn out; I bled and cramped heavily for almost a month before it passed. The third was just like a heavy period that was a little extra long. 

KC: You've gotten plenty of responses, and both of mine were D&C's, so I don't have any info to add, but I wanted to send (((hugs))) to all the mamas who posted on here. It's an awful, sad experience, and I'm so sorry any of you had to go through it, too. 

Thanks to everyone who responded. This is a topic not often spoken of, so I really appreciate you women allowing us to witness your pain for a few moments. Love to everyone.

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Reader Comments (18)

thank you so much to all for those testimonies. Going for my 7 weeks scan in two days after a single but significant burst of red bleeding 5 days ago. i am freaking out, and all you girls have made me feel a bit less alone. wish you all well, love to you all

March 19, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternini

Im so overwhelmingly sad, i have been trying for 4.5 YEARS to get pregnant finally after all this time a positive test i let my hubby know, then my best friend and sister......the very next day @ 5wks 1day i started to bleed i knew straight away it was over, one day delivering amazing news,the next calling to take it all back. This is only my second day of moderate bleeding and shocking headache and small clots. I just want it to be over.
Thank you so much for your stories, at least i have some ideas what to expect.

July 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSo Sad

I am so sorry, So Sad. Be gentle with yourself as you move through the miscarriage. And consider therapy if you find yourself getting deeper into sadness... it can help you in ways that strengthen you even as this saddens you.

Sending you love and healing.

July 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

I have had two prior to the most recent. First I was.18 weeks and I went into labor. I went to the er and I waited for hours before I went back. When I was finally seen the Dr forced my water to break and then left the room. I was in so much pain I passed out when they came to transfer me gland d they moved the sheet from over me and I herd one nurse say OMG I then saw her start to tear up and say why didn't u call us sooner upu made her suffer she could have bled to death. Some hours later I.pushed my son out stillborn next day I had a d & c was in the hospital for 3 days after. He was a supprise but he was wanted and loved

August 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbma

I think im having miscarriage now, started with light bleeding now heavier, passed sone kind of tissue, I shoyld be about 8 weeks, I have had no pain or cramps, just bleeding, doctor put me on bedrest for a month, but I dont feel pregnant anymore, is it possible to pass tissue n bleed n not have miscarriage?

October 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Yes, Heather, but you need an ultrasound, not Internet advice. Please call your doc and ask for an ultrasound.

October 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

Mine was in August this year. I was only 6 weeks, but the pregnancy measured only a little over 4. I was sad , I let it go. But the feeling of loss is coming back stronger. I feel like everywhere I look there are babies and pregnant women. Le sigh.

November 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFn

I go for my d&c tomorrow at noon.

November 5, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Heather: My heart goes out to you.

November 6, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

We Lost our little ray of light a day after we visited the gynea. We heard the heartbeat! Six weeks and one day. We were so excited. We have a 4 year old little girl and she was kissing our baby in my stomach and had conversations with the new baby. On the 8th I started bleeding. Clear red blood with dark cloths. Went back to the gynea he told as that our little ray of lights heart has stopped beating. Did a D&C the same day. It is tough on all of us. But I do believe that everything happens for a reason. It does not take away the pain, the emptiness, the tears, the I do not understand look on my little girls face. But I believe that there is HOPE. I believe that God is holding each one of us on His lap. Comforting us, wiping away our tears. May all you find peace and happiness again. That is my prayer for you. Do not give up hope! God Bless!

November 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLenke

I'm so sorry for your loss. Your kind words for others are so comforting. Thank you for taking the time to share your experience.

November 12, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

I just had a miscarriage a few hours ago. I guess I logged on the site to find some form of comfort. I was 5weeks. This was my second one this year. Started with headaches then cramps and bleeding but not heavy. I feel a empty hole inside. I can't stop crying. I feel a deep sadness

November 15, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkns

I'm so sorry. Cry... the sadness is so normal. You are losing a baby (if that is your belief) and that deserves to be mourned. The sadness will gradually lighten, but only if you feel it deeply now.

I am so sorry. Be gentle with yourself today and for the next few days. I'll be thinking of you.

November 15, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

I had my D&C done and after the only open bed was in the ob unit. I figured I must have been a bad patient cuz i cried every time i heard the babies cry, it was a form of unusual punishment, needless to say i rushed my discharge out of the hospital.

November 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

I think I may be having one now. I have been on the pill for 3months. I have two kids and have never had a miscarriage so don't really know much about them. I started with some spotting for a few days and over two weeks it gradually got heavier with dark red clots about 1-2cm, yesterday morning I felt something come out and when I went to the toilet there was a yellowish/grey thing with tiny little red veins all over it. After that passed the bleeding lightened up and then this morning another of the same was in my pad. I've had little to no cramping but I have felt very tired and drained for about 3 days.

December 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEmma

Emma: It very well could be. Take gentle care of yourself.

December 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

I just had my son 4 months ago. He was two months premmie. I never have cramps or normal periods. I have been bleeding with cramping (when I had my son four months ago I was in full labor dialed to 10 and didn't know. Knew something was not right I had him 30 mins later. So fast forward to this week I have been bleeding alot which is not normal for my periods I was taking a shower and felt something come out, it almost looks like a worm like its flesh colored about two inches long I took a picture of it. I just want to know if any other women have had this tissue come out of them. Confused as I'm not sure if this is a miscarriage, this happened am hour ago after passing this flesh bolted tissue I still have cramping

December 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKim

Kim: This really isn't the forum to be able to tell you if what you are/were experiencing is/was a miscarriage. I'm sorry. If it is/was, I'm sorry for your loss.

December 2, 2012 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

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