Ectopic Pregnancy: Signs, Symptoms & Treatment
So what is an ectopic pregnancy? When the fertilized egg implants itself in the fallopian tube instead of the uterus, we call it an ectopic or a tubal pregnancy. Sometimes the fertilized egg attaches itself to the ovary or to the cervix of the uterus which is abnormal and equally dangerous. In this case, you wouldn't rejoice but head straight to the doctor as it can very well, be fetal.
About 1 in 50 eggs has the tendency to give rise to an ectopic pregnancy. For the first couple of weeks it is virtually undetectable and comes to light around the 8th week and may shake your world down to its foundations. The baby rarely survives in such a scenario and this can weigh you down. On the bright side though, an ectopic pregnancy doesn't hamper your chances of a normal pregnancy in the future. So, be rest assured that this is a passing hurt and take it, head on like the fighter you know you are.
Signs and Symptoms of an Ectopic Pregnancy:
1. Light Vaginal Bleeding 2. Nausea 3. Abdominal Cramps and Pain 4. Pain on one side of the Body 5. Fatigue 6. If the fallopian tube ruptures, the bleeding can get heavy
If you observe any of these symptoms, you're at the risk of haemorrhaging don't spare another minute, rush to the doctor.
Why does this happen?
Many a times, what is noticed in terms of Ectopic pregnancy is that a woman's fallopian tubes are defective. The defect lies in their inefficiency to push the egg into the uterus. Ectopic pregnancy can also occur if tubal ligation isn't done right. Other common causes could include the use of IUD (intra uterine devices) or the contraction of STDs (Sexually transmitted Diseases).
Ectopic pregnancy is common in older women who try to conceive as the attrition (breakdown) rate of their eggs is much higher. Other risk factors for such an abnormal pregnancy would be the use of fertility drugs or a history of having had a pelvic surgery.
Detection of an ectopic pregnancy is pretty textbook and requires you to take one ultrasound. Once detected, there are various ways, a doctor can go about treating it. If the pregnancy has progressed enough to rupture the fallopian tube and sometimes even damage the ovary, they are both removed via surgery.
If the pregnancy is in its initial stages and hasn't impaired the fallopian tube, it is possible to intervene with laproscopic surgery to extract the embryo and neutralize the damages. Medication can also be adopted to stop the progressing pregnancy if there is minimal damage. Once treated, you will still need follow up with the doctor for routine blood tests. This will be done to check the presence hCG in blood that appears at the time of pregnancy.
Ectopic pregnancy is not a death sentence, nor is it a reason to invite into your life, depression. It is a mere bump in the road to a healthy, happy pregnancy in the very near future. Awareness is the key and being quick on your feet, the answer. Don't let a little grief steal from you, eternal bliss. Remember, it is a bad day not a bad life.