What Is Ectopic Pregnancy?

The dictionary definition of the word ‘Ectopic’ is an organ or body part
existing in an unusual position or form. In simple terms, an ectopic pregnancy
is a pregnancy, which is developing in the wrong place. An ectopic pregnancy
occurs when the fertilized egg (or ovum) fails to move down the fallopian tube
and into the womb (or uterus) in the normal manner. Instead, the egg or ovum
implants itself outside of the womb. Most often, (in 95% of cases), ectopic
pregnancies develop in a fallopian tube and rarely, elsewhere in the abdominal
cavity or pelvic area. For example, an egg can attach itself on an ovary, on the
neck of the womb (cervix) or on another organ within the pelvic or abdominal
area (1.5% abdominal, 0.5% ovarian & 0.03% cervical). Ectopic pregnancies do not
usually survive and many will result in a spontaneous miscarriage, others will
develop until a serious problem becomes apparent, which will require immediate
medical attention.

What Causes An Ectopic Pregnancy?

Sometimes the ovum fails to implant itself and it becomes fertilized outside of
the reproductive system. More commonly, the fertilized ovum is trapped, in the
fallopian tube and the baby continues to grow inside the tube where it can cause
the tube to burst or otherwise severely damage it. A burst tube is life
threatening and requires urgent medical attention. yeast infection late period negative pregnancy test

In many cases, ectopic pregnancies occur when the expectant mother has damaged
fallopian tube(s). Tubes damaged, by infections such as pelvic inflammatory
disease or by previous surgery, scar tissue, endometriosis or previous ectopic
pregnancies are a high-risk factor, which significantly, increase the likelihood
of a pregnancy being ectopic. Another risk factor associated with ectopic
pregnancies is becoming pregnant, whilst using a contraceptive-coil or a
progestogen only contraceptive pill. Pregnancies resulting from in vitro
fertilization (i.e. test-tube methods) can be ectopic – even though, the
fertilized egg is placed directly into the womb, it may still attach itself
elsewhere. In some cases, none of the above risk factors are present in the
expectant mother.

What Are The Warning Signs Of An Ectopic Pregnancy?

Pain In the Abdomen – The first sign of an ectopic pregnancy can be a pain on
one side of the abdomen. This pain can be constant and severe and its onset,
sudden.

Pain in the Shoulder – An alternative warning sign could be a pain in the
shoulder, which intensifies when breathing in and out.

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