What is an ectopic pregnancy?

An ectopic pregnancy grows outside the womb, usually in a fallopian tube. It can be a life-threatening situation if left untreated.

An ectopic pregnancy can be life-threatening because if the pregnancy grows too large it can cause the tube to burst. This must always be treated with an operation or medicines. A medical abortion does not affect a pregnancy outside the womb!

How do you know if you have an ectopic pregnancy?

You can make sure that your pregnancy is inside the womb by having an ultrasound.

  • If you use Mifepristone and Misoprostol to end a pregnancy and you do not do an ultrasound first, there is always a chance that you could have an undetected ectopic pregnancy.
  • If you do not pass tissue and blood after taking the Misoprostol, you might have an ectopic pregnancy.
  • If you have sudden severe pain in your belly or back (mostly on one side), if you feel you might faint or if you do faint, or if you feel pain in the shoulder area, you might have an ectopic pregnancy that has burst and you should go to a hospital immediately.

Where are ectopic pregnancies treated?

Ectopic pregnancies are treated everywhere, even in places where abortion is severely restricted.