What happens when you have an ectopic pregnancy?

In a normal pregnancy, a man’s sperm travels to the fallopian tubes through the women’s cervix and womb. The fertilised egg then attaches itself to the lining of the uterus.

When the fertilised egg does not attach itself to the lining of the uterus and instead attaches to the fallopian tubes, then this is called an ectopic pregnancy. According to Very Well Family, 1 in 50 pregnancies in the United States have to be terminated due to being ectopic.

Some ectopic pregnancies occur outside the fallopian tube. According to Mayo Clinic, other forms of ectopic pregnancies occur in the:

  • Ovary
  • Abdominal cavity
  • The lower part of the uterus (cervix)

What causes an ectopic pregnancy?

If a woman’s fallopian tube is inflamed or shaped differently, the fertilised egg is likely to get stuck in the fallopian tube instead of traveling through it.

What are the symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy?

It is possible for women to be unaware of an ectopic pregnancy. Pregnancy tests come out positive and women experience the typical symptoms of pregnancy.

Some red flags that signal an ectopic pregnancy include:

  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Pain on one side of the pelvis
  • A tender cervix
  • Lower abdominal pain

Can an ectopic pregnancy lead to a baby?

An ectopic pregnancy is a high-risk pregnancy, especially for women. It can lead to haemorrhaging, which may lead to death.

According to Very Well Family, “since fetal death is all but certain and the risk to the mother is high, the termination of pregnancy will be recommended either through surgery or abortive medication.”

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