Ask an expert

19 Mar 2003

Blighted ovum
Dear gynaedoc,

After suffering from irregular periods for quite some time, I finally fell pregnant. I wasn't too sure of how far along exactly I was due to my irregular bleeding. I had my first gynae appointment yesterday and when the doc did a scan he could only very slightly make out something in the embryo sac but he warned me that I may have a blighted ovum. He did explain it but I just switched off. I have to go back again for another scan in 10 days for them to tell for sure. He also said that he thought I may have been 6 weeks pregnant, but perhaps I was only just 4/5 weeks - is there such a vast difference between 5 & 6 weeks? and what should we have seen at a 4/5 weeks scan? What is a blighted ovum?
I have been suffering from morning sickness & exhaustion which he says is a good sign of hormonal activity.
Your assistance & advice with this would be really appreciated as we have been so eager to conceive for so long now.
Answer 486 views

01 Jan 0001

A blighted ovum is a pregnancy where the fetus has not formed, so there is only placental tissue and a sac. A normal pregnancy between 4-5 weeks may not show the fetus as it is just too early but, without knowing for sure how far pregnant you are, it is difficult to distinguish this from a pregnancy where the fetus has not developed. While this is a worying time for you, the only way to make the diagnosis is to repeat the scan later. In 10 days, a normal fetus would have developed whereas a blighted ovum would still have the same appearance as now.

Best wishes
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
Voting Booth
Have you entered our Health of the Nation survey?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
32% - 9432 votes
68% - 19955 votes