The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) his revealed that giving progesterone to women with early pregnancy bleeding and a history of miscarriage could lead to 8,450 more babies being born each year.
Researchers, split between the University of Birmingham and Tommy's National Centre for Miscarriage, published two new studies evidencing both the scientific and economic advantages of giving a course of progesterone pessaries to women from when they first present with early pregnancy bleeding, up until 16 weeks of pregnancy to prevent miscarriage.
As a result, experts are now calling for the hormone to be offered as standard in the NHS for women with early pregnancy bleeding and a history of miscarriage.
Progesterone, which is naturally secreted by the ovaries and placenta in early pregnancy and is vital to the attainment and maintenance of healthy pregnancies, was found to give a 3% higher live birth rate in the PROMISE study - however the team cited substantial statistical uncertainty.
Arri Coomarasamy, professor of Gynaecology at the University of Birmingham and director of Tommy’s National Centre for Miscarriage Research’s suggestion is to “consider offering to women with early pregnancy bleeding and a history of one or more previous miscarriages a course of treatment of progesterone 400mg twice daily, started at the time of presentation with vaginal bleeding and continued to 16 completed weeks of gestation.
He continued to say, “In the United Kingdom, we estimate that implementing this treatment strategy would result in an additional 8,450 live births per year.”
PROMISE studied 836 women with unexplained recurrent miscarriages at 45 hospitals in the UK and the Netherlands.