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A Piece of My Mind
October 3, 2017

Full DisclosureAn OB/GYN’s Personal Story of Pregnancy Loss

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
JAMA. 2017;318(13):1223-1224. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.8737

It had been 1 week since I learned that our baby, at 8 weeks’ gestation, no longer had a heartbeat.

This was our first pregnancy and not one easily conceived. I am in my office, door firmly shut, in the clinic where I am a reproductive endocrinology and infertility fellow. There is cruel irony that I am a patient in this same clinic. Just down the hall is the ultrasound suite where my world crumbled.

I try to compose myself enough to review the obstetric ultrasounds from the morning, one of my daily responsibilities as a fellow. I flip through the snapshots of these picture-perfect pregnancies, with their flickering heartbeats of life and promise. I am sure these will make the perfect Facebook announcements, and deservedly so. These couples did not have it easy, either. Any other day, there would be no question that I would share unapologetically in their joy. But today, it is not so simple.