These types of pregnancies occur for many reasons. Sometimes fertilized eggs develop abnormalities, the patient has hormone imbalances, or the patient’s fallopian tubes are misshapen, leading to an ectopic pregnancy. There are a few factors that put a person at risk of having an ectopic pregnancy. Certain fertility treatments may raise a woman’s risk. During IVF, a fertilized egg is implanted into the uterus, but uterine contractions can force the embryo into the fallopian tubes. What can be done to prevent this from happening? There is no surefire way to prevent ectopic pregnancies, but patients can do things to limit the chances of one occurring.
1. Treating STIs as soon as possible
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are risk factors that contribute to fertility issues and ectopic pregnancy. Women should get tested regularly for STDs and STIs because early detection leads to better treatment. Untreated STIs and STDs can make the reproductive organs such as the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries become inflamed. Inflammation of the reproductive organs can cause an ectopic pregnancy.
2. Quit smoking
Smoking causes a host of health problems, and ectopic pregnancy is no exception. Smoking affects the way the body works. People interested in conceiving should quit smoking immediately.
3. Intraperitoneal sperm transmigration
This medical condition occurs when sperm travels outside of the uterine cavity to the fallopian tubes or ovaries to fertilize an egg. This condition is spontaneous but often occurs in women with damaged or obstructed fallopian tubes. To treat this condition, doctors perform a salpingostomy to clean out the fallopian tube.
4. Talk to a fertility specialist
Consulting a fertility specialist is one of the best ways to learn more about ectopic pregnancies and prevention. A specialist will perform the necessary tests to identify a person’s risk factors.
Fertility treatments may still be the best route
Just because fertility treatments may slightly increase the risk of ectopic pregnancy does not mean that couples should avoid these treatments. IVF is still the most successful infertility treatment for couples struggling to conceive. For more help weighing the risks and benefits, couples should speak with a fertility specialist.