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Treatment for Ectopic Pregnancy

Ectopic pregnancy is the condition where a fertilized egg implants outside the uterus. This site may be in the fallopian tubes, ovaries, abdominal cavities, or other organs. 

Although it gets implanted, a fertilized egg cannot normally develop outside the uterus. An ectopic pregnancy may lead to life-threatening complications, and hence to prevent the same, it is necessary to remove the ectopic tissues as early as possible. Depending on how far along you have been in your pregnancy when the ectopic pregnancy is discovered and the signs and symptoms it shows, a gynecologist or an obstetrician-gynecologist may use medicines, abdominal surgery, or D&C or laparoscopic method to end the pregnancy.

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Best Doctors For Ectopic Pregnancy

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    • 4.5/5

      Available

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      Dr. Anagha Nawal

      MBBS, DGO, Master of Clinical Embryology

      22 Years Experience

      Consultation Fee ₹ 500 Free

    • 4.8/5

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      Dr. Y Rathipriya

      MBBS, MD

      20 Years Experience

      Consultation Fee ₹ 500 Free

    • 4.5/5

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      Dr. Sujatha

      MBBS, MS

      18 Years Experience

      Consultation Fee ₹ 500 Free

    • 5/5

      Available

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      Dr. Ranjeeta Khati

      MBBS, DGO, DNB, Post-doctoral Fellowship in Reproductive Medicine

      17 Years Experience

      Consultation Fee ₹ 500 Free

    Best Clinics For Ectopic Pregnancy

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      Best hospital in India for treatment of ectopic pregnancy

      Best hospital in India for treatment of ectopic pregnancy

      Irrespective of the condition, ending a pregnancy is a tough decision. The concern is very sensitive and can often lead patients to live in trauma for a long time. One needs to make sure she is in the right hands.

      Pristyn Care is a highly trusted and coveted hospital for ectopic pregnancy treatment in India. Our Ob-Gyn doctors who provide treatment for ectopic pregnancy have high expertise and carry professional experience of more than 15 years each. At Pristyn Care, ectopic pregnancies are treated by minimally invasive laparoscopic surgeries since the procedure imparts no to fewer surgical complications. Our board-certified obstetricians and gynecologists are dedicated to providing personalized care for each patient and are trained in providing treatment for normal to high-risk pregnancies.

      We understand it is a sensitive concern and are committed to maintaining extreme confidentiality regarding your identity and health concerns throughout and after your surgery journey. To ease the burden of expenses involved in any surgeries, we facilitate No-cost EMI payment and a hassle-free insurance claim.

      Diagnosis and treatment for ectopic pregnancy

      Diagnosis and treatment for ectopic pregnancy

      Diagnosis

      An ectopic pregnancy is usually diagnosed during a regular visit to the Ob-Gyn clinic. However, to confirm the pregnancy is ectopic, the gynecologist typically performs the following tests, first to confirm the pregnancy and then to confirm that it is ectopic.

      • Urine test – The urine test is usually done at the doctor’s clinic. The gynecologist either takes a urine test strip or asks you to urinate into a cup. The pregnancy is confirmed if the urine shows the presence of the hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (HCG).
      • Blood test – A blood test works similar to that of a urine test. The doctor will take your blood sample to check the presence of hCG hormone. The pregnancy is confirmed if the doctors detect the presence of the hormone.
      • Ultrasound – Ultrasound is a standard imaging test that helps gynecologists detect if the fertilized egg has been implanted within the uterine wall or outside. If the doctor detects that the egg has been implanted outside the uterus, your healthcare provider will plan the right course of treatment. Ectopic pregnancy is an emergency condition and requires immediate treatment.

      Treatments

      Medicine for ectopic pregnancy – While termination of ectopic pregnancy is possible through medicines, it is not commonly preferred because the procedure is longer, and needs constant monitoring and repeated follow-ups. Medical management also runs an elevated risk of repeat ectopic pregnancy. 

      However, if the ectopic pregnancy is detected earlier in the cycle, and the patient favors medical management, the following may be employed:

      Medicine: Methotrexate

      Methotrexate is given directly by an injection in one dose. hCG levels are monitored before and after the procedure. If the levels do not decrease after the first dose, a second dose may be needed. The confirmation of termination is done through ultrasound.

      Surgery for Ectopic Pregnancy

      Surgery for Ectopic Pregnancy

      Ectopic pregnancy surgery aims to remove the developing embryo before it grows too large and causes potent. The surgical treatment for removing ectopic pregnancy depends on the particular type of ectopic pregnancy. Some of the common surgical methods include:

      1. Fallopian ectopic pregnancy: 

      • Salpingectomy: A nick is made at the fallopian tube via laparoscopy, the fetus is removed and the incision is stitched back. 
      • Salpingostomy: A nick is made at the fallopian tube via laparoscopy, the fetus is removed, and the incision is left to heal naturally.  
      • Salpingectomy: The whole fallopian tube is removed along with the fetus via laparoscopy. 

      2. Ovarian ectopic pregnancy:

      The fetus is removed from the respective ovary through a laparoscopic procedure. 

      3. Abdominal ectopic pregnancy:

      The fetus is removed from the respective cavity in the abdomen through a laparoscopic procedure. 

      4. Cervical ectopic pregnancy: 

      The fetus or its remaining tissues are curetted from the cervix via D&C procedure (dilation and curettage).

      Different surgical approaches for ectopic pregnancy treatment are:

      Different surgical approaches for ectopic pregnancy treatment are:

      1. Abdominal surgery:

      Conventional open cut method for removing fallopian, ovarian, and abdominal ectopic pregnancies. 

      Procedure: The gynecologist makes an open-cut incision at the site of ectopic pregnancy ( fallopian tubes/ ovary/ or abdominal muscle cavity), removes the ectopic fetus, and stitches back the incision site through minute sutures. 

      2. Laparoscopic Surgery:

      Advanced, minimally invasive method for removing fallopian ectopic, ovarian ectopic, and abdominal ectopic pregnancies. 

      Procedure: As the name suggests, the procedure is performed through an advanced medical tool called a laparoscope. It is a tiny, specialized catheter with a camera and light on its end. It provides a magnified view of the otherwise smaller and narrower organs, thus ensuring better visibility and precision to your surgeon.

      For the procedure, first, a small keyhole-sized port is made at the site. Then, the ectopic fetus is removed through specialized laparoscopic instruments by making 2-3 more tiny key-hole ports if needed. After performing the respective surgery, the main port is closed through 1-2 dissolvable sutures while the rest heal by themselves.  

      3. Dilation and Curettage (D&C): For removing cervical ectopic pregnancy

      Procedure: First, the cervix is dilated through a medicine. Post dilation, the fetus, and its remaining tissues are scraped through a specialized medical device.

      How to prepare for ectopic pregnancy treatment?

      How to prepare for ectopic pregnancy treatment?

      Following is a list of ways through which you can prepare well for ectopic pregnancy removal surgery:

      • Confirm all your current medications, supplements, and herbal potions with your doctor during the consultation. 
      • Medicines such as ibuprofen, insulin, or blood thinners may be required to halt for a few days. This is because they can hamper the surgery and risk excessive bleeding during the procedure. 
      • No surgery can be performed with imbalanced BP or sugar levels. This is why they must first be brought under control to proceed with the surgical treatment.
      • Do not eat or drink at least 4-6 hours before the surgery. Els11e, it may cause anesthesia-related complications. 
      • Carry a pair of loose cotton clothing to change into after your surgery. 
      • Carry a pack of soft sanitary pads to use for post-surgical vaginal bleeding. 

      What should be avoided after ectopic pregnancy surgery?

      What should be avoided after ectopic pregnancy surgery?

      After ectopic pregnancy surgery, the internals of the body become delicate. Hence, you should take it easy and get a post-surgery guide. You should avoid anything that exerts pressure on the body. Generally, in the first few weeks after surgery:

      • Avoid lifting heavy items.
      • Avoid strenuous physical activity.
      • Avoid swimming until surgical stitches are healed.
      • Avoid running or walking over long distances. However it is important to start to move around slowly and gently to avoid blood clots. 
      • Do not eat spicy meals for at least a month.
      • Avoid intercourse until the doctor recommends so.

      What are the possible long-term effects of ectopic pregnancy surgery?

      What are the possible long-term effects of ectopic pregnancy surgery?

      The journey after an ectopic pregnancy treatment is different for every woman. Each woman experiences different physical, mental, and emotional side effects on their body and overall well being. Some long-term effects of ectopic pregnancy may include:

      • Psychological effects – Women often carry grief and guilt after ending the ectopic pregnancy. Common feelings include PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), anxiety, and depression that is triggered due to the loss of the pregnancy. 
      • Fertility – Some cases of ectopic pregnancy treatment include the removal of the ovaries and the fallopian tubes. Around 65% of women who have an ectopic surgery go on to have a healthy, successful pregnancy within 18 months. Some studies show that this rises to around 85% within two years. This is a positive sign for future pregnancies. (Source: ectopic.org.uk)

      FAQs around Ectopic Pregnancy

      How to detect ectopic pregnancy early?

      In most cases, an ectopic pregnancy is diagnosed during regular health check-ups. Other than that, an ectopic pregnancy can be diagnosed through a transvaginal ultrasound scan. The doctor inserts a tiny probe into the vagina to detect the exact location of the fetus implantation. This is a very simple procedure and does not require anesthesia.

      How is methotrexate given?

      Methotrexate is available only on a doctor prescription. The medicine can either be taken either orally or vaginally. If taken orally, it needs to be taken with water like any other medicine. Methotrexate can also be injected into the skin through pre-filled injection pens or syringes. The best way to take the medicine can be suggested by the doctor.

      Are there any side effects and risks of taking methotrexate?

      Methotrexate is usually safe to take, and the medicine does not cause any major side effects. However, typical side effects of the medicine may include blood in the urine or stools, black and tarry stools, rapid heartbeats, blood vomiting, abdominal cramps, sores in the mouth and around the lips, rashes, and itching in the skin, swelling of the eyelids, hands, and legs. These usually are not significant side effects and go away with proper medications.

      How successful are medicines for ectopic pregnancy treatment?

      Methotrexate medicine is an effective treatment for an early ectopic pregnancy. If the ectopic pregnancy does not cause bleeding, it can be treated with medicine, stopping the cell growth and dissolving the existing cells. But, if the ectopic pregnancy is detected late, it requires surgical intervention.

      How successful are surgeries for ectopic pregnancy treatment?

      Whether abdominal or laparoscopic, surgeries are the most effective treatment for ectopic pregnancy. Surgery ensures complete removal of the ectopic tissues and does not usually require any other forms of treatment later.

      Which is better for removing ectopic pregnancy - medicines or surgery?

      Both medicines and surgeries for ectopic pregnancy treatment are effective. If the ectopic pregnancy does not cause bleeding, it can safely be removed with medicines. But if the ectopic pregnancy causes heavy bleeding, it might require emergency surgery. This can be done either through an abdominal incision or laparoscopically.

      How long does ectopic pregnancy surgery take?

      On average, an ectopic pregnancy takes between 45-60 minutes. However, considering the time in preparation and post-surgery until the patient gains consciousness, the entire procedure may take around 2-4 hours.

      When is surgery used to treat ectopic pregnancy?

      Surgery is needed when the ectopic pregnancy causes heavy bleeding. The doctor may treat the condition with either abdominal or laparoscopic surgery.

      Can I take a shower or bath after ectopic pregnancy surgery?

      Usually, you can take a shower after 24 hours of the operation. It is a good idea to have someone around you when you take a shower, in case you find it difficult or uncomfortable.

      When can I plan to conceive after undergoing surgery for ectopic pregnancy?

      There is no confirmed time duration on how long a couple should wait before trying to conceive after having treatment for ectopic pregnancy. But, gynecologists suggest waiting for at least 3 months or two complete menstrual cycles before trying to conceive after ectopic pregnancy treatment.

      How will I feel after ectopic pregnancy treatment?

      After the ectopic pregnancy surgery, you may experience pain and discomfort for a few weeks. In the case of ectopic pregnancy treatment with medicines, you may experience episodes of abdominal cramps for a week or two. Other occasional side effects (affecting up to 15 percent of women) include nausea, vomiting, indigestion, mouth ulcers, sensitivity to light, or feelings of fatigue. The feeling of a pregnancy ending can also cause emotional outbursts in many women.

      Is bleeding after ectopic pregnancy surgery normal?

      Yes, bleeding after ectopic pregnancy surgery is a normal phenomenon. After the surgery, you may have vaginal bleeding similar to that of a period. It may last for about 7-10 days. But, if the bleeding continues for a longer period or is unusually heavy, you need to consult with your ob-gyn doctor at the earliest.

      How long after ectopic pregnancy surgery will I get my period?

      Every woman’s body reacts differently after ectopic pregnancy treatment. Hence, there is no specific time how soon after the ectopic pregnancy operation she can expect to get her periods. Usually, women get the next period within four to six weeks of the surgery. But, some women may take longer. The first period after ectopic pregnancy surgery is usually heavier and lasts longer. But, it should return to normal within two to four menstrual cycles.

      How long is recovery from fallopian tube removal?

      Most women recover within a few days after a laparoscopic salpingectomy (fallopian tube removal surgery). But, it is suggested that she takes enough rest and refrains from any physically strenuous work for at least 14 days after the surgery.

      How much bleeding is normal after fallopian tube removal?

      Bleeding for one month is normal after a fallopian tube removal surgery. But if the bleeding is too heavy and soaks multiple sanitary pads in a day, you need to check with your doctor.

      Case Study

      Case Study

      I lost my first fetus due to ectopic pregnancy, but I am glad I had the right doctor for help” – Shefali (name changed, 33 years)

      Shefali is a resident of Delhi NCR, married for almost 4 years now. Due to her corporate lifestyle, Shefali had spent most of her life living an unhealthy lifestyle. Few weeks after she conceived, the doctor diagnosed that her pregnancy was ectopic.

      “I had terrible abdominal cramps. At times, it was so bad that I would vomit in pain. One day suddenly, I saw blood clots oozing out of the vagina. Initially I thought it was normal spotting. But when the bleeding did not stop, my husband rushed me to the gynecologist where it was confirmed that I had an ectopic pregnancy. The doctor recommended immediate surgery to get tissues removed. It was a very hard time for both of us. But, I am glad my gynecologist extended all possible help to make sure I was safe and healthy.”

      Shefali has recovered now. She and her husband are planning for a second pregnancy. They have been consulting the same ob-gyn and looking forward to a brighter and healthier future.

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