Ectopic pregnancy: symptoms and causes

The diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy is made when the fertilized egg is not in the uterus, where normal pregnancy should develop, but is attached in the ovaries, abdominal cavity, cervix, and fallopian tubes. Most often, tubal ectopic pregnancy occurs. The bearing and birth of the fetus in such cases is impossible, since its development cannot proceed normally outside the uterus.

If the egg is attached in the fallopian tube, then after a month it may break and fall into the abdominal cavity of a large amount of blood. Death in this case is not uncommon.

Why is this happening?

What are the causes of an ectopic pregnancy ? Why does the egg not fall into the “right” place, into the uterus, but remain in the tube? In fact, the adverse factors contributing to the occurrence of an ectopic pregnancy are not so few.  

This may be the underdevelopment of the tubes when they do not have sufficient ability to push the egg to the uterus, and it is attached where it stops. The fallopian tubes cannot stretch as the uterus, so after a while they burst, and blood flows into the abdominal cavity.

Sometimes a fetal egg with a small amount of blood can also get into the abdominal cavity. The pain subsides very quickly, and the woman calms down. In this case, purulent inflammation of the abdominal cavity or peritonitis may develop over time.

The causes of an ectopic pregnancy are infections, previous abortions, untreated inflammations, and difficult births. In any case, to prevent unwanted and unpleasant consequences, you must always consult a doctor.

When to start worrying?

How to determine that an ectopic pregnancy is developing , what are its symptoms and diagnostic methods? Firstly, this is the usual delay of menstruation, the same as during normal pregnancy.   

Secondly, in the initial stages of pregnancy, pain may occur in the lower abdomen. This symptom must alert the woman. Pain can occur on the one hand, in the place where the problem occurred in the fallopian tube, but if the egg is located on the neck or in the abdominal cavity, pain occurs in the lower middle abdomen. In addition, pain when walking, changing body position.

The occurrence and intensity of pain depends on the duration of pregnancy. So, if the egg is fixed in a wide part of the tube, the woman will feel pain at the 8th week of the “wrong” pregnancy. If the fetus remains in the narrowest part of the fallopian tube, the pain will come already at 5 weeks.

If the egg is fixed on the neck, then the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy can occur much later.  

Another characteristic feature of such a pregnancy can be spotting. They can be both plentiful and insignificant. Due to blood loss, blood pressure can drop sharply, dizziness and fainting are possible. Fainting is likely to occur when the body rejects the ovum from the body.

If a woman has even the slightest suspicion of an ectopic pregnancy , or has any unpleasant symptoms, you should immediately consult a gynecologist. To identify pregnancy, a specialist will prescribe an ultrasound and tests for the level of hCG (the level of chorionic hormone). An experienced doctor can detect an ectopic pregnancy already at 4 weeks.   

If the gynecologist has doubts about the correctness of the diagnosis, he can prescribe a laparoscopy operation (pelvic organs are considered under general anesthesia).

When confirming the diagnosis, it is impossible to do without surgery. Currently, the operation to remove the consequences of an ectopic pregnancy is carried out sparingly, but only if the woman in time asked for help. After the operation and subsequent complex treatment, a few months later the woman’s body is fully restored.

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