Ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage and your early pregnancy health

OMNI Ultrasound & Gynaecology Care offers rapid access to diagnostic tests for women at every stage of their pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is not a normal developing pregnancy, and does not contain a fetus. The fertilised egg implants outside the womb, usually in the fallopian tube.

Ectopic pregnancy is the leading cause of maternal deaths, often because it is misdiagnosed as a miscarriage or even occasionally appendicitis. Which is due to the similarity in symptoms.

Classic symptoms associated with ectopic pregnancy

There are three symptoms associated with ectopic pregnancy. But you will notice that these three symptoms are quite common. Even if you were presenting all three symptoms together you may notice why ectopic pregnancy is often misdiagnosed as miscarriage.

That is why early pregnancy scans are vital. And visiting your GP or obstetrician when presenting the below symptoms is important.  The three classic symptoms of ectopic pregnancy are: absent periods, pelvic pain and +/- vaginal bleeding

  1. Pelvic pain

Acute pelvic pain in young women can have a number of possible causes. If you are presenting with acute pelvic pain we would strongly recommend a pregnancy scan. Aside from potentially signifying an ectopic pregnancy acute pelvic pain can also be symptomatic of:

  • Ovarian cysts
  • Appendicitis

In this situation a scan is helpful because an ultrasound can demonstrate most ectopic pregnancies and can also identify complications of ovarian cysts.

  1. Amenorrhoea

Amenorrhoea is when a woman has an absence of her menstruation. Generally the most common cause of amenorrhoea is pregnancy, however, ovarian dysfunction and endocrine disorder can also be associated with amenorrhoea.

  1. Vaginal bleeding

Vaginal bleeding can be with or without clots, spotting only or blood-stained discharge. Irrespective of the amount or type of vaginal bleeding an ultrasound is necessary to determine the viability of the pregnancy, and more importantly the location of the pregnancy.

OMNI provides high quality imaging and care for women who have any degree of vaginal bleeding in the 1st trimester.

While vaginal bleeding is common in early pregnancy, occurring in around 30% of pregnancies unexplained bleeding can be a cause of anxiety. Transvaginal ultrasound or internal ultrasound scan is the best way to find out what is happening.

Ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage and your early pregnancy health

The presentation of ectopic pregnancy can vary from minor non-specific symptoms to a woman suddenly collapsing.

Ectopic pregnancy is difficult to diagnose because it does mimic a miscarriage. It is of vital importance that GPs and emergency physicians have a greater awareness of ectopic pregnancy. This can increase the number of women who are referred for an early scan and in turn hopefully decrease maternal morbidity and even mortality.

Same day scanning

At OMNI we are conscious lower abdominal pain or bleeding can often occur without warning. We offer same day reporting and same day return consultation in serious cases to ensure the best diagnostic care for women.

Same day scanning is not only a great way to reassure woman and their partners but also enables immediate and appropriate informed planning for you and your referring GP, obstetrician or gynaecologist.

To find out more about how OMNI Ultrasound & Gynaecology Care in Sydney can help you, or to book an appointment, please contact us today.

OMNI Ultrasound & Gynaecological Care

Condous performs Advanced Endosurgery procedures for women needing intervention for pelvic masses, adnexal pathology, severe endometriosis or hysterectomy. He also runs ‘Hands on’ Live Sheep Laparoscopic Workshops for gynaecologists at Camden Veterinarian School.
Having completed an undergraduate degree with the University of Adelaide, he left Australia in 1993 and moved to London where he completed his training in Obstetrics and Gynaecology. From 2001 to 2003 Condous worked as a Senior Research Fellow at St George’s Hospital, London. At St George’s he set up the Acute Gynaecology Unit, the first in the United Kingdom. It was also during this time that he developed an interest in Early Pregnancy and especially the management of pregnancies of unknown location (PULs). Condous has developed many mathematical models for the prediction of outcome of PULs which have been featured in numerous peer review journals. In 2005, he returned to Australia where he completed his Laparoscopic Fellowship at the Centre for Advanced Reproductive Endosurgery, Royal North Shore, Sydney.

Condous was appointed as a Consultant Gynaecologist and Senior Lecturer at Nepean Hospital in 2006 and soon was made Associate Professor. In 2010, he was made Departmental Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Nepean Hospital. He obtained the MRCOG in 1999 and was made FRANZCOG in 2005. In 2009, he was awarded his Doctorate in Medicine (MD), University of London, for his thesis entitled: “The management of pregnancies of unknown location and the development of new mathematical models to predict outcome”.

Condous has edited three books including the “Handbook of Early Pregnancy Care”, published over 100 papers in international journals and is internationally renowned for his work in Early Pregnancy. He is the Associate Editor for Gynaecologic Obstetric Investigation, which is a European based journal, as well as the Australasian Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine (AJUM). He is on the organising committee and is an invited speaker at the International Society of Ultrasound in Obstetrics and Gynaecology (ISUOG) Scientific meeting in Sydney 2013. His current research interests relate to the management of ectopic pregnancy, 1st trimester growth, PULs and miscarriage and the use of transvaginal ultrasound (in particular sonovaginography, to predict posterior compartment deep infiltrating rectovaginal endometriosis).Condous is also actively involved with post-graduate education including the annual running of the Early Pregnancy and Gynaecological Ultrasound Interactive Courses for Sonologists, Radiologists, Sonographers and Gynaecologists in Australia.