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In Parents.com: ARC OB/GYN Addresses ‘Tubal’ Pregnancy

Ectopic or “tubal” pregnancies, which occur outside the uterus, can be both heartbreaking and life-threatening. Parents.com, the online news source connected to Parents magazine, interviewed Austin Regional Clinic Ob/Gyn Dr. Crystal Berry-Roberts, to learn how to avoid an ectopic pregnancy.

She explained that there are “no definitive ways” to prevent an ectopic pregnancy,

“Avoiding conditions that may cause scarring of the fallopian tubes may help reduce your risk,” Dr. Berry-Roberts told the online family magazine. She recommends:

  • Limiting sexual partners.
  • Practicing safe sex to protect against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
  • If you think you might have an STD, get a diagnosis and start treatment immediately.
  • If you smoke, quit.

Typically, an ectopic pregnancy, which occurs in about 1 to 2 percent of all U.S. pregnancies, results when a fertilized egg implants in a fallopian tube blocked by scar tissue or another abnormality so the egg can’t make it to the uterus.

Early on, an ectopic pregnancy can mimic a normal one. The woman may experience a missed period, breast sensitivity, fatigue and nausea. But Dr. Berry-Roberts warns that heavy period bleeding, severe pelvic pain, lightheadedness or instability on your feet require an immediate visit to the emergency room.

Sadly, this kind of pregnancy cannot lead to a successful childbirth. The fetus lacks enough room to grow, which means the pregnancy threatens the mother’s health as well.

“There isn’t anything the doctor can do to move the pregnancy through the fallopian tube and into the uterus,” Dr. Berry-Roberts noted in the magazine story.

The good news? Statistically, about 65 percent of women who experience ectopic pregnancies go on to have healthy pregnancies within 18 months – and some studies suggest the chances increase to 85 percent over two years, according to the Ectopic Pregnancy Trust.

To read the full story, click here.

Visit ARC Health Library to learn more about ectopic pregnancy.

Tags: Dr. Crystal Berry-Roberts, ectopic pregnancy, tubal pregnancy

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