Diagnosing ectopic pregnancy could be a challenging task, because indications of the condition often reflect those of an early normal pregnancy. Some of the typical symptoms experienced by pregnant women who might have an ectopic pregnancy are missed menses, breast soreness, morning sickness, vomiting, or frequent urination during the day.
The initial alarming signals of an ectopic pregnancy are usually painful sensation in the vagina and sometimes vaginal bleeding. You might experience pelvic pain, severe abdominal aches, or, in extreme cases, severe shoulder or neck pain. The shoulder and neck pain usually takes place when the blood from the ripped ectopic pregnancy surges upwards and exacerbates certain nerves. Those who have experienced the pain usually describe it as being stabbing and penetrating. It may center on one side of the pelvic arch and come and go or differ in severity.
Some additional symptoms that could point to an ectopic pregnancy:
If you display the above symptoms, an important and foremost test that the doctor would recommend is a urine test for ectopic pregnancy. In addition to the urine test, if the doctor suspects that you might be experiencing an ectopic pregnancy, he may recommend further testing such as:
However, the negative drawbacks of relying only on the urine test for ectopic pregnancy are that it gives only weak positive results. To eliminate cases of suspicion, a blood test may also be performed which is invariably positive in ectopic pregnancy.
When an ectopic pregnancy is diagnosed, it often observed that the pregnant woman's uterus is smaller in size than required for the number of weeks since the woman's last menstrual cycle. In most cases, an internal pelvic examination reveals the findings. The best way to determine whether it could be a possible spontaneous abortion, a continuing pregnancy inside the uterus or an ectopic pregnancy is through the ultrasound scan.
Depending upon the symptoms the pregnant woman is experiencing, additional probing and the right course of action to be taken, is based on the woman's symptoms, the scan results and the amount of human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG) in the blood.More articles from the Medical Tests Category