What Is Ectopic Pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is when a fertilised egg implants itself outside of the womb, usually in one of the fallopian tubes.

Fallopian tubes connect the ovaries to the womb. When an egg attach itself in the tube, it won’t be able to grow into a full baby. Unfortunately, the fetus cannot be saved as it cannot survive in the tube. Medicine or an operation will be used to remove the fetus.

Symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy don’t always cause symptoms and might only be detected during an ultrasound.

If you do have symptoms, they tend to develop between the 4th and 12th week of pregnancy.

Symptoms can vary from:

  • a missed period and pregnancy signs
  • abdomen pain low down.
  • A brown watery discharge
  • Pain in your shoulder
  • irritation when peeing

When to get medical advice

Contact your doctor or visit your nearest clinic if you have some of the symptoms and you are pregnant.

Your Docter will ask your symptoms and do a pregnancy test to establish whether you might have an Ectopic pregnancy.

You might be referred to a clinic for further assessment, where an ultrasound and blood tests will confirm whether it is indeed Ectopic.

When to get emergency help

If you’re experiencing a combination of:

  • a sharp, sudden and severe pain in your abdomen
  • you feel dizzy or black out
  • feeling sick
  • looking very pale

These symptoms might indicate that your Fallopian tube has ruptured. This is very serious and surgery to repair the Fallopian tube will be necessary.

How an ectopic pregnancy is treated

  • You will be monitored to see if any eggs disolves itself.
  • You will receive an injection of methotrexate to stop the pregnancy from growing more than it has.
  • A laparoscopy is performed to remove the fertilized egg, usually along with the affected Fallopian tube

Help and support after an ectopic pregnancy

Losing a pregnancy can be heart broken, and many women feel grief as if they had lost a family member. It’s not strange for such emotions. Make sure you take time to grieve.

Get in touch with a Fertility support group for assistance.