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Is It Safe to Try for a New Pregnancy After Ectopic Pregnancy?

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Updated June 15, 2014

Is It Safe to Try for a New Pregnancy After Ectopic Pregnancy?

Over 95% of ectopic pregnancies are implanted in the fallopian tubes.

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Question: Is It Safe to Try for a New Pregnancy After Ectopic Pregnancy?

I had a tubal pregnancy a few months ago. I want to try again but everyone is telling me it's too dangerous to conceive again. Is a new pregnancy after an ectopic pregnancy really that risky?

Answer:

Although the specifics of each person's situation will naturally be different, for most women it is fine to get pregnant again after an ectopic pregnancy. Women with a history of tubal pregnancy do have a 10% chance of having it happen again, and although that number might sound high, that also means that there is a 90% chance it will not happen again. (Tubal pregnancy is a synonym for ectopic pregnancy, referring to the fact that most ectopic pregnancies occur in the fallopian tubes.)

It's a good idea to talk with your doctor about the specifics of your situation before you get pregnant again. This way you can have an action plan for the best possible outcome. For example, if you have untreated infections or other risk factors that might have played a role in your previous ectopic pregnancy, addressing those risk factors might reduce your risk of a repeat ectopic pregnancy. In addition, you can arrange for your doctor to monitor your next pregnancy early along to confirm that it is not ectopic.

Note that if you lost a fallopian tube as a part of the treatment for your previous ectopic pregnancy, you may have a lower odds of conceiving in the months that you ovulate from that side, but with patience your odds of eventually having a normal pregnancy are between 50% and 80%. Again, talk to your doctor for advice that factors in your medical history.

Source:

Ectopic and Molar Pregnancy. March of Dimes. Accessed: May 24, 2009. http://www.marchofdimes.com/professionals/14332_1189.asp.

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