Ectopic Pregnancy | Overview


What is an ectopic pregnancy?

In a normal pregnancy, a fertilized egg implants in the uterus (also called the womb). In an ectopic (say: "ek-top-ik") pregnancy, the fertilized egg does not make it to the uterus and implants somewhere else. An ectopic pregnancy most often occurs in the fallopian tube, causing a “tubal pregnancy.” It can also occur in the ovary, cervix or abdomen.

It is important to find the ectopic pregnancy in its early stages. An ectopic pregnancy can rupture or damage the pelvic organ that it is implanted in. This can be very dangerous for the mother.


Diagnosis and Management of Ectopic Pregnancy by AM Lozeau, MD, MS, and B Potter, MD (American Family Physician November 01, 2005,

Written by editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 04/14
Created: 07/06