An ectopic pregnancy is one in which the fertilized egg implants itself outside the uterus which means that the baby has very few chances of survival. This is a very rare phenomenon - less than 2% of pregnancies in the world are ectopic pregnancies. So, you have nothing to worry about but it never hurts to know about certain risk factors associated with it.
1. Previous ectopic pregnancy
Women who already had an ectopic pregnancy have higher chances of having it again when compared to women who didn’t. It can be anywhere between 5 and 50% of having ectopic pregnancy again.
2. Vaginal infection
Having a bacterial infection in the vagina - either in the uterus or the fallopian tubes could result in an ectopic pregnancy. You might not see any symptoms of an infection but it could be affecting you.
3. Sexually Transmitted Diseases
A few diseases like gonorrhea, Chlamydia, and pelvic inflammatory disease could cause an ectopic pregnancy. So it is always a good idea to get a clean bill of health before you try and get pregnant.
4. Fertility-related issues
If you’ve been trying to get pregnant for a long time but have not been able to it might be that there are fertility issues. And if you’re thinking of getting pregnant with the help of fertility meds or through IVF (In Vitro Fertilization).
If you’re 35 or older, you might’ve experienced one if not all of the above-mentioned risk factors which will alternate how your fallopian tubes work.
Some studies show that taking progestrine-only hormonal contraceptives increase your chance of having an ectopic pregnancy but there isn’t much evidence to this.
A few symptoms of ectopic pregnancy include abdominal pain, vaginal bleeding, pelvic pain or tenderness, shoulder pain and signs of shock. These symptoms vary from one woman to another so it’s not exactly possible to say for sure if you’re having an ectopic pregnancy. In the early weeks of pregnancy, you will have the same symptoms as you would in a normal pregnancy like a missed period, nausea and fatigue.