Before modern medicine (or with) what % of conceptions led to full term births

I have heard that even with modern nutrition and medicine only 60% of conceptions result in a full term birth. So what were the percentages in the ages before modern nutrition and medicine? I don’t know if there is any way to actually measure it, but I would assume it was closer to 30-40%.

The problem, I would think, is that many women may technically conceive (by which I mean sperm fertilizes egg) but it never takes. As far as the woman knows nothing happens as her menstrual cycles continue.

These days studies may be perfromed and statistical analysis applied but in times before modern medicine I doubt they had a clue about any of this and would have no way of knowing if conception occurred. About the best I think you could hope for would possibly be numbers of women who clearly became pregnant but lost their baby anyway…perhaps there are numbers on that. Also, do you include stillborn in these numbers (i.e. carried pregnancy full term but baby was born dead) or only pregnancies that somehow self-aborted somewhere along the way (for whatever reason except a sought after abortion)?

I’m referring to miscarriages and I guess intentional miscarriages. I’m trying to determine what percentage of conceptions lead to someone being six years old. Historically the childhood mortality rate was about 50%, so if conception only resulted in a live birth 40% of the time then that means only one in five conceived eggs resulted in someone being six years old.

To give you a starting point you might want to consult the following.

So in the US today 16% of diagnosed pregnancies fail to produce a live child. If we assume that an equal proportion of those abortions would also have spontaneously failed we can bring that figure up to 20%. Then we add in 12.5% of pregancies being premature and we get a figure of~33%. IOW ~70% of conceptions result in a full term birth with modern nutrition and medicine if we exclude abortion.

And this is in the US today. As you surmised it is almost certain that the effects of overwork, lack of medical aid, poor diet and even the absence of definitive tests for pregnacy would have increased the risk in the past. How much it would have increased though is hard to say. Today’s figures on miscarriage, spontaneous abortion and premature birth are artificially high due to women electing to having children later in life. OTOH shorter periods between births increases the risk of miscarriage, and in the absence of contraception long periods between pregancies would have been rare.

WAG, but I would say that the number of pregancies resulting in full term births without the benefit of modern technology was probablya orund the 60% level.

According to Scientific American, 50% of conceptions do not implant and cause a heavier period unnoticed by most women. Of the remaining 50%, only 10% go to full term. The rest miscarry naturally.

So only 1 out of 10 conceptions result in birth. Shows that life rarely begins at conception and makes a mockery of the idea of giving person-hood status to conceived eggs. I guess women who could not prove they naturally did not implant or naturally miscarried could be found guilty of murder.

Which issue is this from? Can you link to it online? Thanks.