From fertilization to of course delivery, pregnancy does require a number of steps in a woman’s body. One of these steps happens to be when a fertilized egg does travel to the uterus in order to attach itself. In the case of an ectopic pregnancy, the fertilized egg does not attach to the uterus. Instead, it may also attach to the fallopian tube, abdominal cavity, or cervix.
While a pregnancy test may, in fact, reveal a woman is pregnant, a fertilized egg cannot properly grow anywhere other than of course one’s uterus.
In fact, an untreated ectopic pregnancy can be a medical emergency. Prompt treatment does reduce one’s risk of complications from the ectopic pregnancy, thus increasing one’s chances for future, healthy pregnancies, and it also reduces future health complications.
What causes an ectopic pregnancy?
The cause of an ectopic pregnancy is not all that clear. Inflammation and scarring of the fallopian tubes from a previous medical condition, infection, or surgery
- hormonal factors
- genetic abnormalities
- birth defects
- medical conditions that do affect the shape and condition of the fallopian tubes as well as reproductive organs
Who is at risk for an ectopic pregnancy?
All sexually active women are at some risk for an ectopic pregnancy. Risk factors do increase with any of the following
Causes of ectopic pregnancy:
- maternal age of 35 years or older
- history of pelvic surgery, abdominal surgery, or even multiple abortions
- a history of the pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
- history of endometriosis
- conception occurred despite tubal ligation or intrauterine device (IUD)
- conception aided by fertility drugs or even procedures
- history of ectopic pregnancy
- history of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), such as gonorrhea or in fact chlamydia
- having structural abnormalities in one’s fallopian tubes that do make it hard for the egg to travel
- In the case of the above-mentioned risks, one can talk to one’s doctor. One can thus reduce the risks of future ectopic pregnancies.
What are the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy?
Nausea, as well as breast soreness, are rather common symptoms in both ectopic and no doubt uterine pregnancies. The following symptoms are more common in an ectopic pregnancy and can also indicate a medical emergency:
• sharp waves of pain in one’s abdomen, pelvis, shoulder, or neck
• severe pain that does occur on one side of the abdomen
• light to heavy vaginal spotting or even bleeding
• dizziness or fainting
• rectal pressure
One needs to contact one’s doctor or seek immediate treatment if one knows that one is pregnant and suffers from any of these symptoms.
Diagnosing an ectopic pregnancy
If one suspects one may have an ectopic pregnancy, one does need to see one’s doctor immediately. Ectopic pregnancies cannot be diagnosed from a physical exam.
One can go in for a transvaginal ultrasound. This does involve inserting a special wand-like instrument into one’s vagina so that one’s doctor can indeed see if a gestational sac is in one’s uterus.
One’s doctor may also make use a blood test to determine one’s levels of hCG as well as progesterone. These are hormones that are rather present during pregnancy. If these hormone levels do start to decrease or stay the same over the course of a few days and a gestational sac is not present in an ultrasound, the pregnancy is likely to be ectopic.
Treating ectopic pregnancy
Ectopic pregnancies are not safe for the mother. Also, the embryo will not be able to develop to term. It is necessary to remove the embryo as quickly as possible for the mother’s immediate health as well as long-term fertility. Treatment options do very much depending on the location of the ectopic pregnancy and its development.
One is prescribed a medication by the doctor for relief.
Many surgeons do suggest removing the embryo and also repairing any internal damage. This procedure is referred to as a laparotomy. One’s doctor will insert a small camera through a small incision in order to make sure they can see their work. The surgeon then does remove the embryo and carries out repairs of any damage done to the fallopian tubes.
One’s doctor will give one specific instruction with regard to the care of one’s incisions after surgery. The chief goals are to be able to keep one’s incisions clean and dry while they heal. One needs to check them daily for infection signs, which can include:
• bleeding that will not stop
• excessive bleeding
• foul-smelling drainage from the site
• hot to the touch
One can expect some light vaginal bleeding and small blood clots after surgery. This can also occur up to six weeks after one’s procedure. Other self-care measures that one can take do include:
• do not lift anything heavier than 10 pounds
• drink plenty of fluids in order to prevent constipation
• pelvic rest, which does mean refraining from sexual intercourse, tampon use, and douching
• rest as much as possible the first-week post-surgery, and then one can increase the activity in the next weeks as per one’s toleration levels.
It is important to notify one’s doctor in case one’s pain increases or one feels something is out of the ordinary.
Prevention of ectopic pregnancy
One can reduce the risk through good reproductive health maintenance. One must ask one’s partner to wear a condom during sex and also limit one’s number of sexual partners. This does reduce one’s risk for STDs, which can also cause PID, a condition that can indeed cause inflammation in the fallopian tubes.
One must visit one’s doctor regularly and go in for regular gynecological examinations and STD screenings.
The long-term outlook after an ectopic pregnancy much depends on whether it has caused any physical damage. Most people who have ectopic pregnancies do have healthy pregnancies. If both fallopian tubes are still intact, or even just one, the egg can indeed be fertilized as normal. However, if one has a preexisting reproductive problem that can affect one’s future fertility and also increase one’s risk of future ectopic pregnancy.
Surgery may affect the fallopian tubes, and it can cause future ectopic pregnancies. In case the removal of one or both fallopian tubes is required, speak to your doctor about possible fertility treatment in Hyderabad.