This woman complained of terrible stomach pains, what doctors discovered was totally unexpected

Bloated and suffering from intense stomach pains, a 37-year-old woman was particularly shocked by her doctors' diagnosis.

woman stomach pain doctors shocked health pregnant ectoptic pregnancy
© Yuris Alhumaydy / Unsplash
woman stomach pain doctors shocked health pregnant ectoptic pregnancy

Whatever the country, the message seems to be the same everywhere: avoid saturating emergency departments with minor problems. Perhaps that's why this 37-year-old British woman waited more than 10 days before seeking medical attention for stomach pains. Earlier would have been even better, because what the medical profession discovered could have been life-threatening.

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An atypical case

This British woman, who had been suffering from violent stomach pains for several days, was stunned when doctors told her she was pregnant. And at 23 weeks! A staggering fact, given that so-called normal pregnancies generally last between 39 and 42 weeks maximum. But the euphoria of the news was short-lived.

Indeed, her surprise pregnancy wasn't going at all as planned: her fetus was located outside the uterus. This type of pregnancy, known as an ectopic pregnancy, is life-threatening for both mother and unborn child. Most ectopic pregnancies begin in the fallopian tubes, the ducts that connect the eggs to the uterine cavity. This was not the case here. The fetus was developing in her abdomen.

A mystery with no explanation

Worldwide, only 1% to 2% of pregnancies are ectopic. According to doctors, ectopic pregnancies are very often asymptomatic, but may nevertheless present the following inconveniences: intense pain on one side of the belly only, discomfort when relieving oneself or vaginal discharge. So why do ectopic pregnancies develop? Chronic conditions such as pelvic inflammatory disease, sexually transmitted diseases or medical treatments for infertility may be responsible.

The Briton had also been pregnant twice, without any problems. Despite the unbelievable situation, the fetus was developing very well. According to the medical journal Mary Ann Liebert:

Abdominal pregnancies are among the least common pregnancies when it comes to ectopic pregnancies. They account for less than 1% of all such pregnancies.

Following the discovery of this complicated pregnancy, the mother-to-be was transferred to a specialized hospital. At 29 weeks, doctors operated to remove the baby, who then spent two months in intensive care for premature infants.

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This article has been translated from Gentside FR.

Woman goes to hospital for painful periods, doctors discover a foetus growing in her liver Woman goes to hospital for painful periods, doctors discover a foetus growing in her liver