Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
Diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy is usually established by blood hormone
tests and pelvic ultrasound.
Treatment options for ectopic pregnancy include both surgery and
What is an ectopic pregnancy?
An ectopic pregnancy (EP) is a condition in which a fertilized egg settles and
grows in any location other than the inner lining of the uterus. The vast
majority of ectopic pregnancies are so-called tubal pregnancies and occur in the
Fallopian tube (98%); however, they
can occur in other locations, such as the ovary, cervix, and abdominal cavity.
An ectopic pregnancy occurs in about one in 50 pregnancies. A molar pregnancy differs from
an ectopic pregnancy in that it is usually a mass of tissue derived from an egg with
incomplete genetic information that grows in the uterus in a grape-like mass
that can cause symptoms to those of pregnancy.
The major health risk of ectopic pregnancy is rupture leading to internal bleeding. Before the 19th century, the mortality rate (the death rate) from
ectopic pregnancies exceeded 50%. By the end of the 19th century, the mortality rate dropped
to five percent because of surgical intervention. Statistics suggest with current advances in early
detection, the mortality rate has improved to less than five in 10,000. The
survival rate from ectopic pregnancies is improving even though the incidence of
ectopic pregnancies is also increasing. The major reason for a poor outcome is
failure to seek early medical attention. Ectopic pregnancy remains the leading
cause of pregnancy-related death in the first trimester of pregnancy.
In rare cases, an ectopic pregnancy may occur at the same time as an intrauterine pregnancy. This is referred to as heterotopic pregnancy. The incidence of heterotopic pregnancy has risen in recent years due to the increasing use of IVF (in vitro fertilization) and other assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs). For additional diagrams and photos, please see the last reference listed below.
Picture of an ectopic or tubal pregnancy
Reviewed by Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD on 12/2/2013
Endometriosis is the abnormal growth of cells (endometrial cells)
similar to those that form the inside of the uterus, but in a location
outside of the uterus.
Endometriosis is most commonly found on "...