The difference between ectopic pregnancy and a normal pregnancy
Pelvic pain in early pregnancy is a common symptom: so how can you tell the difference between an ectopic pregnancy and a normal developing pregnancy?
Following on from The difference between ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage, this blog will look at the difference between ectopic pregnancy and a normally developing pregnancy.
The biggest difference
During early pregnancy it is normal to experience some discomfort. However, persistent lower abdominal pain can be cause for a more serious concern: ectopic pregnancy.
An ectopic pregnancy is where the fertilised egg implants outside the womb: usually in the fallopian tube. Generally speaking this is not a normally developing pregnancy and usually does not contain an embryo; which are the key differences between an ectopic pregnancy and a normally developing pregnancy.
What’s the chance of an ectopic pregnancy occurring?
While ectopic pregnancy is the leading cause of maternal deaths in early pregnancy, it only occurs in around 1 out of every 80 pregnancies. Having said that, there was tragic news in April of a young mother bleeding to death because the ambulance staff did not know about ectopic pregnancy: they thought she had a miscarriage.
Miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy
The symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy may mimic a miscarriage; however there are two key differences. The first key difference is that an ectopic pregnancy grows in the fallopian tube and may burst causing severe internal bleeding and endanger your life.
The second key difference is that an ectopic pregnancy is not a normally developing pregnancy. Ectopic pregnancies are often called tubal pregnancies because the egg implants in the fallopian tube and more often than not does not contain an embryo.
In the most recent “Saving Mothers’ Lives”, United Kingdom report 2006 – 2008, there were several cases where women who presented with diarrhoea or gastrointestinal symptoms actually died from an undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy. So if you have a change in bowel habit or feel faint, please do a urinary pregnancy test and if positive then have a pelvic scan with OMNI.
Giving you peace of mind
Vaginal bleeding is very common in the first trimester. In approximately 30% of all pregnancies women will experience some vaginal bleeding, while this does not mean you are miscarrying unexplained bleeding can cause great anxiety and uncertainty for expecting parents.
At OMNI Ultrasound we can help put your mind at ease with a transvaginal or internal ultrasound. These scans are the best way to find out what is happening with your pregnancy, and because bleeding often occurs without warning we endeavour to see you the same day.
The advantage of same day scanning is that it can enable immediate and appropriate informed planning for you and your referring GP, Gynaecologist or Obstetrician.
Have we answered all your questions? If you would like to know more, please don’t hesitate to contact OMNI Ultrasound & Gynaecological Care. Located in St Leonards and Penrith in Sydney our compassionate team are always happy to look after you.
For more information, to book a consultation, please contact us today.