Actually, there is no definite cause for ectopic pregnancy. However, the reason is assumed to be a damaged fallopian tube, which can hinder or prevent the proper transportation of a fertilized egg to the uterus, forcing the egg to implant itself in the fallopian tube or anywhere outside the uterus. Some women tend to use an intrauterine device in order to prevent pregnancy. However, the chances of having an ectopic pregnancy are more in this case. Apart from this, some other factors that can lead to ectopic pregnancy are listed below.
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- History of ectopic pregnancy
- History of pelvic surgeries
- Tubal ligation reversal or unsuccessful tubal ligation
- Infertility treatments such as IVF (In Vitro Fertilization)
- Use of infertility drugs
If you experience any of the above-mentioned symptoms, your doctor is likely to suggest a number of tests to rule out the chances of all other health conditions to confirm the ectopic pregnancy. Usually, a pregnancy test and a pelvic examination will be conducted at first. Sometimes, an ultrasound scanning as well will be recommended by your doctor in order to evaluate the condition of your uterus and fallopian tube. Once ectopic pregnancy is confirmed, your doctor will craft a treatment method for you, depending on your future pregnancy plans and existing medical condition, if any.
A fertilized egg can never grow outside the uterus and hence, the doctors will remove the tissue as soon as possible in order to save the patient from severe consequences. Usually, there are two treatments for an ectopic pregnancy; medications and surgery. Medications are recommended for women whose pregnancy have not progressed much and have not ruptured their fallopian tube. In this case, the doctors will inject the patient with an appropriate dosage of methotrexate or Trexall. This drug will prevent further growth of the cells and the body of the patient will simply absorb the fertilized egg that is implanted on the fallopian tube. However, this is possible only if the abnormal pregnancy is detected in the early stage. Note that this is really challenging, since the early ectopic pregnancy symptoms will be really trivial in most of the cases.
In case you fail to detect ectopic pregnancy in the initial stage, your doctor may recommend a surgery to tackle the situation. Usually, the patients will have to undergo a laparoscopy in which the doctors will make small incisions on the stomach and insert a laparoscope into the abdomen through the incisions in order to remove the unfertilized egg from the fallopian tube. If your fallopian tube is already damaged, your doctor is likely to remove the tube as well. In case of heavy internal bleeding or badly ruptured fallopian tube, doctors will suddenly go for an open surgery, which is known as a laparotomy. Note that it is possible to get pregnant even after an ectopic pregnancy. However, it is recommended to talk to a fertility specialist in case your fallopian tube is removed.