The word ectopic means “out of place.” An ectopic pregnancy is a condition where the embryo is located outside of the womb, typically in the Fallopian tube where the egg is supposed to be carried from the ovaries to the uterus). This sort of pregnancy is nonviable and may require emergency intervention, so medical attention should be sought immediately.
How are Ectopic Pregnancies Diagnosed?
According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the earliest indications of an ectopic pregnancy are light bleeding and vaginal pain, or even sharp shoulder pain.
If you are having an ectopic pregnancy, it can cause blood to leak into the stomach. This irritates involuntary muscles that move the diaphragm and this is why it is felt in the shoulder.
A doctor will first order a blood test to check your hCG levels, which is a pregnancy hormone. The test will first validate your pregnancy. Additionally, an ultrasound will help to confirm the image of the pregnancy’s location.
How are Ectopic Pregnancies Treated?
Because ectopic pregnancies are located outside the uterus, this can rupture the Fallopian tube and would require reparative surgery. These pregnancies are not able to be reimplanted into the uterus and require complete removal through either medication or surgery.
Some treatments include:
- Medication called methotrexate will help stabilize blood loss and treat the ectopic pregnancy.
- Laparoscopic procedures which are surgeries that allow surgeons to remove the ectopic pregnancy without having to make a large incision.
- Emergency surgery
Where Can I Get a Free Ultrasound?
At Lakes Life Care Center, we offer no-cost pregnancy services like ultrasounds to the women in our community at no cost. If you are considering your pregnancy options and want to eliminate the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy (which happens as often as 1 in every 50 pregnancies, we can help.
Contact us today to schedule your appointment today!