The Patients Experience 1

I am a 24 year old and this my experience of an ectopic pregnancy. My first pregnancy was when I was 22 years old. I was only 17 weeks pregnant and I had a miscarriage.

My second pregnancy followed 8 weeks later. Unfortunately I lost my second child at 16 weeks. It was then that I was diagnosed with an incompetent cervix. I was relieved to know what was actually wrong with me so that when I fell pregnant again, I would be taken care of in the most appropriate way.

In August 2006 I found out I was pregnant again. I was really excited with my third child, but most of all nervous due to all the complications in the past. I went to my GP and she referred me to the Early Pregnancy Department. The midwife kindly did an internal scan on me. At that time I was in tears as she said “there is no pregnancy in the uterus”. However to be on the positive side, she said “it could be due to an early pregnancy, so that may be a reason why we cannot see it”, but I knew something was not right.

The midwife sent me to the gynae ward. I saw a Registrar and he explained that they would do my bloods and see how high my pregnancy hormones were. I waited anxiously for 2½ hours. The results came and it showed my pregnancy blood cells were about 275. The registrar looked concerned and advised me to come the following day to get my bloods repeated. I went back the following day and had my bloods taken again only to be told that the results were much worse than the day before.

A few days later, I had a phone call from one of the gynae emergency doctors. He asked me to come in as they would like to investigate where the pregnancy actually was. It seemed that from the results that they had it was most likely an ectopic pregnancy.

I was explained about a procedure called a laparoscopy and I was taken to theatre. When I woke up I felt a bit sore. I asked the nurse “is my baby safe?” and she said, “have a rest and the doctor will speak to you.” I knew for certain then that I had lost my third child. An hour later a doctor came into see me and said, “I’m so sorry, but it was an ectopic pregnancy and unfortunately we could not save your fallopian tube.” For the first time in my life I was feeling that a very important part of my body; something that made a female complete had gone. I felt empty. I was now not only mourning for my child but also for something that kept me complete – the hope of having a high chance of children in the future.