Ectopic Pregnancy Definition By Medical
Ectopic pregnancy definition is a condition when ovum conception occurs outside the uterus (usually in one of the fallopian tubes). Pregnancy begins with an egg cell that has been fertilized by a sperm cell. In the normal process, the fertilized egg will stay in the fallopian tube for about three days, before it is released into the uterus. Inside the womb, this egg will continue to grow until labor time arrives. However there is the possibility of a fertilized egg being attached to an organ other than the uterus and this is called an ectopic pregnancy.
The fallopian tube is the organ that is most often attached to the egg. While other organs that may be the site of the development of ectopic pregnancy include the abdominal cavity, ovary, and cervix.
Causes of Ectopic Pregnancy
One of the most common causes of ectopic pregnancy is failure of fallopian tubes, for example because of inflammatory processes. This damage will block the fertilized egg to enter the uterus so that it eventually sticks in the fallopian tube itself or other organs.
In addition, unbalanced hormone levels or abnormal development of a fertilized egg can sometimes act as a trigger.
Risk Factors Ectopic Pregnancy
There are a number of factors suspected to trigger an ectopic pregnancy. These risk factors include:
- Choice of contraceptives. The use of a spiral or intrauterine device contraceptive (IUD) aims to prevent pregnancy. However, if pregnancy persists, it is likely that this pregnancy is ectopic.
- Have had an ectopic pregnancy before. Women who have experienced this condition have a higher risk to re-experience it.
- Have an infection or inflammation. Women who have had inflammatory fallopian tubes or pelvic inflammatory disease from sexually transmitted diseases, such as gonorrhea or chlamydia, have a higher risk for ectopic pregnancy.
- Fertility problems and treatment can sometimes trigger ectopic pregnancy.
- The process of sterilization and vice versa. The tubal tube-binding procedure or the incomplete opening of the infant tube is also at risk of triggering an ectopic pregnancy.
Symptoms of Ectopic Pregnancy
Initially, ectopic pregnancy tended to be asymptomatic or had a sign similar to that of an ordinary pregnancy before finally another symptom indicated an ectopic pregnancy. Among others are:
- Pain in the lower abdomen that usually occurs on 1 side.
- Pain in the pelvis.
- Mild bleeding from the vagina.
- Dizzy or limp.
- Nausea and vomiting accompanied by pain.
- Pain in the shoulder.
- Pain or pressure on the rectum during bowel movements.
- If the fallopian tube is torn, great bleeding may occur that may trigger a loss of consciousness.
- Ectopic pregnancy includes medical conditions that require emergency treatment.
Therefore, you should immediately go to the hospital if you experience these symptoms.
Diagnosis of Ectopic Pregnancy
In addition to asking general health conditions, the doctor will hold a physical examination of the pelvic cavity. But ectopic pregnancy can not be confirmed only by physical examination. Doctors also require ultrasound or blood tests.
The most accurate ultrasound method for detecting an ectopic pregnancy is a transvaginal ultrasound. This procedure will confirm the location of ectopic pregnancy as well as fetal heart rate.
In the early days of pregnancy, especially 5 to 6 weeks early after conception, pregnancy may not yet be detectable through ultrasound. In this condition the doctor may recommend a blood test to identify an ectopic pregnancy. This test is used to detect the presence of the hormone hCG (Human chorionic gonadotropin), this hormone produced the placenta during early pregnancy. In ectopic pregnancy, hCG hormone levels tend to be lower than normal pregnancies.
Steps to Treat Ectopic Pregnancy
The fertilized egg will not grow normally if it is not in the womb. Therefore, ectopic tissue must be removed to avoid complications that can be fatal.
Women suspected of having an ectopic pregnancy should be immediately taken to the hospital for treatment as soon as possible. Pregnancy pregnancies detected early without a normal developing fetus in the womb are generally treated with methotrexate injections. This drug will stop the growth as well as destroy the cells that have been formed.
The doctor will monitor the patient’s hCG levels after receiving the injection. If the levels of hCG in the patient’s blood remain high, this usually indicates that the patient needs methotrexate injections again. Potential side effects of this medicine include nausea and vomiting. Abdominal pain may also occur within 3 days or 1 week thereafter.
Ectopic pregnancy can also be treated with surgery. This procedure is usually performed through a keyhole or laparoscopic operation. The umbilical fallopian tubes will be repaired if possible.
Complications and Prevention of Ectopic Pregnancy
Incorrect diagnosis and delayed treatment of late ectopic pregnancy can lead to severe bleeding and even death from tearing of the fallopian tubes or uterus. If experiencing these complications, the patient should undergo emergency surgery through open surgery. Fallopian tubes may be repairable, but they should generally be removed.
Handling with surgery also has its own risks. Some of the possible complications include bleeding, infection, and damage to the organs around the operated part.
Ectopic pregnancy can not be prevented completely. In order to avoid this condition, you must avoid or reduce the risk factor. An example is by undergoing blood and ultrasound tests as early detection or monitoring the progress of pregnancy. Especially for women who have had ectopic pregnancy.