5 August 2016
What does “Ectopic” means?
When a pregnancy begins growing outside of the uterus (womb), It is called an ectopic pregnancy. “Ectopic” means ‘in the wrong place’. The reproductive organ most commonly affected is the fallopian tubes.
Who is at risk?
The prevalence is approximately 1-in100 women in Malaysia. All sexually active women are at some risk for an ectopic pregnancy. Risk factors increase with any of the following:
- history of ectopic pregnancy
- history of pelvic inflammatory disease
- conception occurred despite tubal ligation or intrauterine device (IUD)
- conception aided by fertilization (IVF) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)
- maternal age 40 years and above
Symptoms of an Ectopic Pregnancy
- sharp waves of pain in the abdomen, pelvis, shoulder, or neck
- light to heavy vaginal spotting or bleeding
- dizziness or fainting
- rectal pressure
Treating Ectopic Pregnancy
Ectopic pregnancies aren’t safe for the mother. Also, the embryo won’t be able to develop to term. It’s necessary to remove the embryo as soon as possible for the mother’s immediate health and long-term fertility.
You may be able to reduce your risk through good reproductive health maintenance.
Maintain regular visits with your doctor, including regular gynecological exams and regular STD screenings.
By Dr. Vinodhini Bhaskaran, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynecologist