What Is Ectopic Pregnancy

When the embryo gets impregnated outside the uterus, it results in ectopic pregnancy, an unusual condition that invariably leads to the death of the fetus, resulting in failed pregnancies.

What Causes Ectopic Pregnancy?

This type of pregnancy occurs when the fallopian tubes are blocked due to the presence of external substances. This can also occur when there is a hormonal imbalance in the mother’s body. In normal conditions, the egg and sperm fuse to form a zygote. This zygote passes through the fallopian tubes, gets impregnated in the uterus and develops into an embryo.

In ectopic pregnancies, due to obstructive passage of fallopian tubes, the zygote is stuck midway and does not pass through the fallopian tubes. During this process, the zygote may get attached to the fallopian tubes. In some cases, these zygotes may attach themselves to the cervix, stomach or even the ovary itself.

Risk Factors Of Ectopic Pregnancy:

Hormonal imbalances are responsible for causing ectopic pregnancies. Apart from this, an inflammation or surgery performed on the fallopian tubes may also increase the chances of an ectopic pregnancy.

Women born with a malformed fallopian tube due to some type of birth defect are easily susceptible. An infection of the fallopian tubes or inflammation in the pelvic region is also responsible for causing this condition.

Are You Vulnerable?

1. Age plays a decisive role in deciding how successful your pregnancy can turn out to be. If you are above 35 years of age, you are easily vulnerable to ectopic pregnancies.

2. Habitual smokers are at an increased risk of exposing themselves to this type of pregnancy due to the harmful substances and chemicals that are released by cigarettes.

3. Women who undergo in-vitro fertilization are also easily susceptible due to application of artificial techniques for conceiving.

Also Read :

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How To Detect An Ectopic Pregnancy:

Early symptoms of ectopic pregnancies are almost similar to that of a normal pregnancy making it a little tricky to diagnose the condition. Nausea, vomiting, breast tenderness and frequent bouts of urination are experienced by many women. However, if you notice vaginal bleeding it is high time you report the condition to your doctor and get appropriate treatment to rule out the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy.

Other signs of ectopic pregnancy include severe pain in the abdominal and/or pelvic region. Some women may feel excruciating pain in the shoulders or neck region. Lower back pain and sudden development of low blood pressure in an otherwise healthy woman are symptoms of ectopic pregnancy.

How Should Ectopic Pregnancy Be Treated?

An ectopic pregnancy does not allow the fetus or embryo to receive the necessary nourishment it requires as opposed to a normal pregnancy where the fetus gets the nourishment from the placenta in the uterus. Due to this, the embryo never grows into a full fetus. In fact, the rapid multiplication of cells in the embryo applies excess pressure on the area where the embryo is falsely impregnated. This could be in the fallopian tubes, stomach, abdomen, cervix or ovary.

With increased pressure, the area might burst or rupture leading severe bleeding. This needs to be treated immediately with a surgery or suitable medications and drugs to prevent blood and fluid loss. The embryo should be removed immediately through surgery or with medications to prevent build up of dead cells and tissues in the region.


In some cases, women with ectopic pregnancies are able to conceive and deliver normally if they did not have any major problems in terms of reproductive development or sexual maturity. In some other cases, the woman is never able to conceive again. If you are a smoker, it is high time you quit the unhealthy habit if you are planning to conceive and become pregnant again.