Posted by Nicole on 14th April 2014

Symptoms Of Ectopic Pregnancy: What Are Its Causes And Remedies?

A responsible, pregnant woman will sometimes be paranoid about her health. This type of woman will do everything she can, to do things right such as observing a healthy lifestyle, seeking prenatal care, taking necessary vitamins and so much more.

When the woman finds out that she is actually experiencing an ectopic pregnancy and that she or the baby may not survive will devastate her.

What Is An Ectopic Pregnancy?

  • An ectopic pregnancy is pregnancy that is “out of place”. Normally, a fertilized egg should implant in the uterus because this is highly muscular and vascularized and is an optimal place to support a growing fetus.
  • However, in ectopic pregnancy, it gets lodged anywhere else other than the uterus.
  • The most common sight for ectopic pregnancy is the fallopian tubes.
  • Other sites for ectopic pregnancy include the ovary, cervix, and abdomen.
  • Ectopic pregnancies are dangerous because it places the woman at risk for internal bleeding and shock.
  • If the pregnancy occurs in places other than the uterus, the risk of rupture as the fetus grows is increased.
  • An ectopic pregnancy does not end with a live birth.
  • The classic outcome is to end the pregnancy in order to save the woman’s life.

Causes Of Ectopic Pregnancy

  • There is no known specific cause for ectopic pregnancies.
  • Ectopic pregnancies can occur when the fertilized egg gets stuck while it is on its way to the uterus for implantation.
  • Often, fertilized eggs get stuck in the fallopian tube because this is damaged, scarred, or is misshapen.
  • An infection in the fallopian tube can partially or completely block the fallopian tube leading to ectopic pregnancy.
  • A previous pelvic surgery may be responsible for scars and adhesions in the pelvic area. It is believed to be one of the reasons for ectopic pregnancy.
  • Women getting pregnant in their later years of life are more at risk of developing ectopic pregnancy.
  • Women getting pregnant with IUD still in place.
  • Ectopic pregnancy is also common in women who smoke.

The risk increases if there is history of several abortions, especially induced abortions.

Ectopic Pregnancy Symptoms

Ectopic pregnancy is still considered a pregnancy and so women will experience the same subtle signs that indicate a positive pregnancy. As the pregnancy advances, the signs of ectopic pregnancy become pronounced.

  • Abdominal pain or pelvic pain.
  • Pain that worsens with straining or movement.
  • Light or heavy vaginal bleeding.
  • Painful sexual intercourse.
  • Pain during a pelvic exam.
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness and fainting.
  • Signs of shock from internal bleeding.
  • Shoulder pain – A hallmark sign of ectopic pregnancy.

Treatment For Ectopic Pregnancy

Remedies would rely on the stage that the pregnancy is detected.

Treatment for early detection:

  • Methotrexate: Medication that helps end the pregnancy. It allows the body to absorb the pregnancy tissue. It is valuable as it saves the fallopian tube. However, the possibility of avoiding damage to fallopian tube depends on the number of days of pregnancy.
  • Surgery: Laparoscopic surgery may be done to manually end the pregnancy. In many cases the fallopian tube has to be removed.
  • Expectant management: For ectopic pregnancies that are observed to be miscarrying on its own, no treatment is necessary.

For advanced ectopic pregnancy:

  • Emergency Surgery: Involves a laparotomy where the ruptured fallopian tube is repaired and blood and clots are evacuated.

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