Doncaster mum's praise for diabetes drug that could prevent repeated miscarriages
A Doncaster mum who suffered four miscarriages has praised a diabetes drug which she says helped her give birth.
Cally Cusack, 29, took part in a trial of the drug which is normally used to treat diabetes but which medics now believe could prevent repeat miscarriages.
Ms Cusack, a care worker, told the Daily Mail how after four years of heartbreak, she became pregnant a month after finishing the sitagliptin trial.
She had four miscarriages before giving birth to her first son, Dawson, in 201s but admitted that she had considered giving up on having a child.
She lost three babies in 2014 and 2015 and hoped her fourth pregnancy would be the one success.
But during a scan in 2016, at nine weeks pregnant, doctors could not find a heartbeat and she lost her fourth child.
She told the newspaper: 'People would tell you that it was a foetus, not a baby, but as soon as you find out you are pregnant, it's a baby to you.
“Losing four, each after the other, took its toll and we were ready to give up before being enrolled on a trial to try this new drug.”
Cally, who has been with her partner Joshua, 27, for seven years, became pregnant a month after finishing the sitagliptin trial.
She had her first son, Dawson, in February 2018, and her second, Austin, a year later.
She said: 'It is so amazing to be a mum because I didn't think that it would happen.'
Academics found that sitagliptin – branded as Januvia - can help prepare the womb lining for pregnancy, which may cut the odds of a miscarriage.
Results of a trial on the drug showed it boosted the number of stem cells in the womb lining by 68 per cent.
Warwick University researchers believe the drug therefore helps to protect special cells which keep the embryo safely in place.
If the drug is successful in clinical trials, it would be one of few treatment options for women who have tragically lost multiple babies.
Co author Professor Siobhan Quenby said: 'We have improved the environment that an embryo develops in and in doing so we hope to improve the chances of a successful pregnancy.
'Although this research was specifically designed to test whether we could increase the presence of stem cells in the womb, follow-up of participants found that there were no further losses of normal pregnancies in those who took sitagliptin.'
Miscarriage occurs when a pregnancy is lost within the first 23 weeks after conception.
The main symptoms are bleeding from the vagina, which may be accompanied by lower abdominal pain.
There are various reasons women may have a miscarriage – it is common and is not usually caused by something they have done.
Losing three or more pregnancies in a row - known as recurrent miscarriages - is uncommon but still affects around one in 100 women.
Co-author Professor Jan Brosens, of Warwick Medical School, said: 'There are currently very few effective treatments for miscarriage and this is the first that aims at normalising the womb before pregnancy.
'Although miscarriages can be caused by genetic errors in the embryo, an abnormal womb lining causes the loss of chromosomal normal pregnancies.
'We hope that this new treatment will prevent such losses and reduce both the physical and psychological burden of recurrent miscarriage.'