Ectopic pregnancy is a pregnancy issue that many people dread, primarily because they don’t know much about it and secondarily because most of the stories surrounding ectopic pregnancy are grisly in nature. While ectopic pregnancy is by no means a light-hearted subject, arming yourself with knowledge can at least allow you the best chance of preventing one and coping with one if it happens to materialize.

Essentially, ectopic pregnancy is a complication of normal pregnancy. A complication is something that happens during the course of a natural process that makes that process more difficult to perform successfully or eliminates the possibility of the process finishing altogether. Translated into the language of pregnancy, an ectopic pregnancy is one that can result in a much harder childbirth at best and the termination of the child or a stillbirth at the worst.

Ectopic pregnancy is defined as any pregnancy that happens when the fertilized embryo, after conception, starts growing somewhere other than in the uterus where pregnancy is supposed to take place. Most commonly, this is in the Fallopian tube and it occurs when the embryo implants into the tissue before actually making it all the way out of the Fallopian tube and into the uterus. Less common ectopic pregnancies happen when implantation occurs in the ovary, cervix or even the abdominal cavity in some cases.

The unfortunate truth of the matter when it comes to ectopic pregnancies, it is very difficult to save the baby. Unless the pregnancy corrects on its own or with some nudging from modern medicine, the only solution is to terminate the pregnancy in order to save the mother. This can be done with a drug known as methotrexate, or more conventionally through the use of abortion surgery.

The best way to deal with ectopic pregnancy is to avoid it altogether. Another unfortunate point about it though is that it can be very difficult to pinpoint what caused the ectopic pregnancy because doctors at the moment are not entirely sure what causes it. If you are worried about ectopic pregnancy, talk to your doctor and they will take your specific situation into account before recommending actions that in your case could help reduce the chances of ectopic pregnancy.