Women go to great lengths to try and have a healthy pregnancy but many may have no idea that their partner’s marijuana use could lead to a miscarriage.
According to researchers at Boston University, when men smoke marijuana once a week or more, their partners are twice as likely to experience a miscarriage when pregnant. The researchers examined over 1,400 couples before they got pregnant.
Couple were asked about marijuana usage over the past two months and then followed them as they got pregnant and, in some cases, miscarried.
Almost 18% of the couples in the study reported a miscarriage with only 8% of the men smoking once a week or more.
Smoking, but less frequently than once a week, did not have an association with miscarriage rate, according to the research.
One reason for the risk of miscarriage connected to marijuana smoking is that it may negatively affect sperm quality and the change in sperm quality may drive the increased occurrence of miscarriage.
The research was presented Monday at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine Congress & Expo in Philadelphia. Alyssa F. Harlow, MPH from Boston University School of Public Health, and the lead author of the research, told ABC News the research will be presented for peer-reviewed publication “in the near future” where it will be further scrutinized.
“I think that’s part of the reason why this study is getting so much attention, because we’re used to putting all the focus, all the blame, all the stress on the women and the world of male fertility is really exploding,” Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News chief medical correspondent and a board-certified OBGYN, said on “Good Morning America” this past Monday.
She added, “Forty percent of couples’ infertility is due to male factors so it bears repeating we need to focus on the men just as much as the women.”