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Ectopic pregnancy – causes, diagnosis, treatment

Pregnancy is a big change in a woman’s body. They start at conception and end with childbirth. The fertilized egg travels to the uterus to establish itself there. This is where the new man is born. It happens, however, that the fertilized egg will not attach to the uterus. However, it can be located on the fallopian tube, cervix or abdominal cavity. It is then an ectopic pregnancy.When this happens, pregnancy tests may indicate a pregnancy, but such a pregnancy has no chance of being sustained. Late diagnosis can result in serious complications. Such a pregnancy must be terminated as soon as possible.

Ectopic pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy – why is this happening?

The cause of such pregnancy is not always clear for diagnosis. Sometimes it results from diseases that women suffer from. These can be, for example:

inflammation of the fallopian tubes
hormonal disorders
birth defects of reproductive organs
fallopian tube diseases

Risk factors

It cannot be clearly stated that a woman is more exposed to this type of pregnancy. All women can have such a pregnancy. Of course, the aforementioned diseases may contribute to it, but it also occurs in healthy women. Ectopic pregnancy may also be more common when a woman:

is about 40 years old
she had an abortion
has endometriosis
got pregnant with an intrauterine device or ligated fallopian tubes
she already had an ectopic pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy – symptoms

Normal and ectopic pregnancies have similar symptoms, such as abdominal pain and breast tenderness. However, the following symptoms are more common in an ectopic pregnancy and you should pay attention to them:

sharp pain in the abdomen, pelvis, neck, coming back in waves
severe pain on one side of the stomach
dizziness and fainting
bleeding from the genital tract
feeling of increased pressure in the anus

If you know that you are in a blessed state and notice disturbing symptoms, see a doctor as soon as possible.

Diagnosis

If you feel there is something wrong with your pregnancy, see your doctor immediately. An ectopic pregnancy cannot be diagnosed by physical examination. A vaginal ultrasound examination must be performed. It involves inserting a special device into the vagina. This is how the gynecologist will check if there is a pregnancy bag in the womb.

Your doctor may also perform a blood test to determine the levels of hCG and progesterone. These hormones are made during pregnancy. If your hormone levels drop or remain the same for several days, this could indicate an ectopic pregnancy.

If your symptoms are sudden, such as severe bleeding or severe abdominal pain, your doctor may not have time to do all the tests and may have you terminate the pregnancy straight away. Time is critical here as an ectopic pregnancy can lead to rupture of the fallopian tube, which in turn can lead to life-threatening internal hemorrhage.

Ectopic pregnancy – treatment

An ectopic pregnancy is life-threatening to the mother and must therefore be terminated. In addition, the embryo will not be able to develop in any environment other than the uterus. In order for a woman to become pregnant later, it should be terminated as soon as possible, because if it is maintained for a long time, it may result in future infertility.

Before removal, the doctor may prescribe medications that will prevent the rupture of the ectopic mass and thus minimize complications. Such a drug is, for example, methotrexate. It stops the growth of the embryo. It is given as an injection. Along with taking this medicine, you should have regular blood tests until surgery to check if the medicine is working. The drug will cause a miscarriage which manifests itself:

contractions
bleeding
removal of the embryo

In this case, the operation will not be needed. The only downside of the drug is that a few months after taking it, a woman cannot get pregnant.

Surgery

The procedure to remove the embryo and repair any damage is called a laparotomy. During the operation, the doctor makes a small incision and introduces a mini-camera to control the procedure on the monitor screen. It removes the embryo and repairs any damage to the fallopian tube.

There may be slight vaginal bleeding after surgery. It may occur up to 2 months after the procedure.

Losing a pregnancy is a great experience for many women, so it’s worth talking to a psychologist or looking for a support group. Remember that a quickly caught ectopic pregnancy will give you a chance to become pregnant in the future.

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