Decidual Cast

Definition - What does Decidual Cast mean?

A decidual cast refers to the layer of the (decidualized) endometrium which when sloughed off, takes the shape of the uterus. The lining of a pregnant uterus is referred to as the decidua and its appearance is due to the presence of different hormones, specifically progesterone. The decidua is the result of the thickened endometrium that is necessary for the development of a fetus.

FertilitySmarts explains Decidual Cast

Casts can continue to grow in the absence of pregnancy, and it can also occur with the use of the injectable contraceptive depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA), and also the use of oral contraceptive pills and hormonal disorders involving excessive progesterone secretion. There have been cases where women who have used oral contraceptives for menorrhagia have passed decidual casts.

Ultrasonography of an ectopic pregnancy with a decidual cast sometimes is mistaken for an intrauterine pregnancy.

The expulsion of the cast can mimic the signs of a miscarriage, and it can cause severe bleeding and abdominal pain. Some symptoms include thicker blood passage during the period, and there is not much that can be done for its short-term treatment. Painkillers can be used to help with the pain, but medical consultation should be sought if any or all of these symptoms occur.

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