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Ectopic Pregnancy: One of the Complications Of Pregnancies

Dec 5, 2007
Ectopic pregnancy is one of the pregnancy complications that may occur in some women. The fertilized ovum travels from the fallopian tubule and gets implanted in the uterine lining during a normal pregnancy. In ectopic pregnancy, the fertilized ovum is not implanted in the uterine lining, but may get implanted in the ovary, fallopian tubule, abdomen, cervix or any other part of the pelvic area.

The fact that the pregnancy occurs outside the uterus in an organ that is not conducive to its development, ensures that such pregnancies cannot develop into a birth. The pregnancy is considered a high risk, as the organ that the ovum has implanted in, can burst, which can cause internal bleeding which could have a grim outlook. More often, the pregnancy occurs in the fallopian tube, due to it being blocked or damaged. This is why such a pregnancy is also referred to as a tubal pregnancy. In most women, such pregnancies result in a spontaneous abortion, but in some, clinical intervention may be required.

Causes of Ectopic Pregnancy

It is said that, those who have pelvic inflammatory disease and those who have suffered tubal damage due to surgery, scar tissue are more prone to suffering from ectopic pregnancy. Endometrioses can also be another cause. The cells from the uterine lining may get detached in some cases and get attached to other organs outside the uterus. Those who are using invitro fertilization may also be at risk. Those who have a history of such pregnancies also are under the high risk category.

How It Is Diagnosed

The women who have ectopic pregnancy have similar pregnancy symptoms as those with a normal pregnancy. The symptoms may include sore breasts, nausea, frequent urination and missed period. They may however have to watch out for other symptoms, such as pain in the abdomen and the shoulders. The pain may be sharp and stabbing, concentrated on one side of the pelvic area. Other symptoms include vaginal spotting, dizziness and there may also be low back pain. Some women experience pain while having a bowel movement. Most women have severe pain in the lower abdomen and heavy bleeding.

Diagnosis can be done by an examination done by the doctor, who can identify smaller uterine size than normal as well as the abnormal swellings. In most cases, a laparoscopy or a Laparotomy is done to solve the problem. In some women, only the pregnancy sac is removed, while in others, the entire tubule is removed. This is one of the dreaded pregnancy problems that some have to deal with.

It is therefore advised that, pregnant women read as many books and journals they can in order to stay informed. It is a fact that though there may be a risk for a repeat ectopic pregnancy, the chances are that the women go on to have a normal pregnancy and childbirth the next time.
About the Author
Ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilized ovum is attached to organs, other than the uterus. Such a pregnancy results in miscarriages in some, but for others can be one of the pregnancy complications that has to be dealt with carefully. Read books and other resources to stay informed about pregnancy problems, such as tubal pregnancy.
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