Tommy’s Professor Shennan tells BBC that bereaved mothers need to be kept well informed

Laura Percival was left upset and confused after the hospital sent her baby’s body away for tests without her consent following a miscarriage. Professor Shennan says that mothers who miscarry should be kept informed and consulted after their loss.

Tommy’s news, 06/01/2017

Miscarriage can be a painful and confusing time with many overwhelming emotions. It’s important that women are supported and helped through the steps after losing a baby.

Sadly, for Laura Percival this wasn’t the case.

Laura suffered a miscarriage at 12 weeks into her pregnancy and was left upset and angry after the hospital sent her baby’s body away for tests without her consent.

It took her weeks to be able to reach the hospital bereavement team, by which time her baby had been sent to another hospital for tests. It was then too late for the cremation service that Laura had initially wanted.

Talking to BBC London, Clinical Director of Tommy’s Preterm Surveillance Clinic Professor Shennan said that keeping bereaved mothers informed about the process following miscarriage is so important.

‘If you have a situation where you’ve lost a baby, it would normally be good practise to inform the woman sensitively and in an appropriate way about what her options are; you would find out what she would want and you would give her choices.’

For Laura, the hospitals insensitivity twinned with the fact that she can no longer have the cremation she had wanted has made the grieving process far more traumatic and drawn out.

‘It is an ordeal which constantly plays on my mind. I really have struggled to get closure from this ordeal.’

The hospital in question said that they carry out analysis on the tissue from miscarried babies to rule out wider health problems being the cause of miscarriage. They have said that they do not need the mother’s permission for this.

Tommy’s believe that miscarriage can already be a heartbreaking and stressful experience and any steps that can be taken to avoid causing further distress to the mother should be.

If this article has affected you, you can contact our midwives on for free at 0800 0147 800. The information line is open 9 – 5, Monday – Friday and the midwives are on hand with support, advice or just a friendly ear to talk to.

If you or someone you love is suffering a miscarriage you can read our information about how your miscarriage will be managed here.

To read more about routines that may be carried out to check everything is ok after your miscarriage, you can read our information on tests after miscarriage here.

You can read the original article here.