Ectopic pregnancy happens when the sperm has fertilized the egg and the resulting embryo develops inside the fallopian tube. This happens in the first trimester and usually but NOT alwaysthe growing embryo, confined within the fallopian tube, produces pressure on nerves resulting in sharp abdominal pains or cramps.
Always investigate unusual cramping, out of cycle uterine bleeding or continuous pain. You may be (like me) miraculously free of any pain with an ectopic pregnancy. Continuous bleeding and extreme fatigue were my only symptoms during my entire 6 week ectopic ordeal.
REFUSE to accept advice from any medical professional who tells you to come back for an examination "when the bleeding stops".
In 1987, I changed doctors three times till I was able to secure provable medical results that were not simply the opinion of my overworked doctor. After 6 interminable weeks of juggling doctors, I finally saw a specialist who took less than 72 hours to determine that (a) I was indeed pregnant and (b) the pregnancy was non-viable and most likely ectopic (c)I needed immediate surgery, which was completed within 24 hours of the final result.
Had I followed my original family doctor's orders, I'd be dead now; my loving husband would be widower and our (then) small son would have grown up without the guidance and love of his Mother.
INSIST on seeing a specialist if your doctor does not have answers for you: Your life and the welfare of your family may be at stake. Ectopic pregnancy and a doctor's lack of knowledge can kill you. If you suspect you are having an ectopic pregnancy, you owe it to your family's future to be pro-active and educate yourself.
An ectopic pregnancy is a pregnancy which is not where it should be, it may be in the fallopian tubes, which is the most common ectopic pregnancy, but it could be in the cervix or very rarely outside the uterus, or as in my case, implanted in the caesarean section scar of the uterus. Symptoms can be spotting, pain in either side of the abdomen, or absence of an embryo in your ultrasound scan. Treatment can be either surgery or an injection of a chemotherapy drug called methotrexate which stops the pregnancy in its tracks ie: prevents the cells from developing further.
An ectopic pregnancy is where the fertilised egg plants itself anywhere but inside the uterus/womb, which means it could be in the fallopian tube, cervix etc. It is not a viable pregnancy.
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