Extrauterine Pregnancy

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extrauterine pregnancy

[¦ek·trə′yüd·ə‚rēn ′preg·nən·sē]
Gestation outside the uterus.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Extrauterine Pregnancy


(ectopic pregnancy), development of the human fetus outside the uterus. Depending on the site of attachment (implantation) of the ovum, extrauterine pregnancy may be tubal, ovarian, or abdominal. The tubal form is the most common, occurring in 99 percent of cases of extrauterine pregnancy. The ovum is fertilized by a spermatozoon in the Fallopian tube. Extrauterine pregnancy occurs when the ovum is unable to move through the tube to the uterus. This usually happens when the mucous membrane of the tube is injured as a result of previous inflammatory diseases of the internal genitalia (one-third of all extrauterine pregnancies), after abortions, or after gonorrhea. In some cases extrauterine pregnancy develops in the presence of glandular formations in the uterine musculature (adenomyosis) or because of underdevelopment (infantilism) of the genitalia caused by a hormonal deficiency. In other cases extrauterine pregnancy may occur as a result of the so-called external movement of the ovum, during which the fertilized ovum from the ovary on one side enters the uterine tube on the other side. By the time the ovum enters the tube a trophoblast is already developing, and the ovum is able to become implanted in the mucous membrane.

An extrauterine pregnancy is generally interrupted between the fourth and sixth weeks because of destruction of the tubal wall by the villi of the ovum (rupture of the tube) or, if the ovum became attached close to the abdominal end of the tube, because of the ejection of the ovum (caused by contractions of the tube) into the abdominal cavity—tubal abortion. The interruption of an extrauterine pregnancy by rupture of the tube results in internal bleeding and shock due to sudden acute pain in the lower abdomen. Intra-abdominal bleeding is less in a tubal abortion. The gripping pains, accompanied by brief fainting, disappear in a few hours, and the patient may feel well. However, the danger of repeated, severe internal bleeding remains, and therefore additional examinations are often needed to determine an extrauterine pregnancy, such as a pregnancy test and puncture of the posterior fornix vaginae, with the patient kept under observation sometimes for two to three weeks. In rare cases, after a tubal abortion the ovum becomes attached in the abdominal cavity (secondary abdominal pregnancy) and develops until a late stage. By performing a laparotomy it is sometimes possible to deliver a live, mature infant. Treatment involves surgical removal of the damaged Fallopian tube. Every woman who has undergone surgery for an extrauterine pregnancy should be treated for some time thereafter to prevent a secondary extrauterine pregnancy in the other tube.


Aleksandrov, M. S., and L. F. Shinkareva. Vnematochnaia beremennost’. Moscow, 1961.
Persianinov, L. S. “Vnematochnaia beremennost’.” In Mnogotomnoe rukovodstvo po akusherstvu iginekologii, vol. 3, book 1, 1964.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Extrauterine gestational choriocarcinoma: report of two cases.
The common presenting manifestations include abdominal pain, abdominal distention with palpable mass and irregular vaginal bleeding as also observed in our case.3 Some of these extrauterine tumours have been associated with and presumably arise from endometriosis.
There is a remarkable change in the structure and function of the pulmonary vasculature during the transition from fetal to extrauterine life.
This patient further reinforces that breastmilk is an immunologically rich source of nutrition that serves as a transition from intrauterine to extrauterine life.
As for AVF or AVM from other body districts, it is crucial to recognize and embolize all the arterious feeders; typically uterine AVFs do not present with extrauterine involvement and are fed only by uterine arteries [1].
All healthy term newborns with normal adaptation to extrauterine life, who underwent a routine HP to perform blood sampling for metabolic screening at 48 hours of life, were consecutively enrolled in the study.
A fearless surgeon with a penchant for cardiology, he had conducted 'every ectomy and otomy in the book', and regularly did hernia repairs, hysterectomies and total hip replacements, while his clinical brag list included three full-term extrauterine deliveries (incidence 1 in 30 000).
The successful transition from intrauterine to extrauterine life requires adaptation to several changes (1).
Indeed, lymph nodes represent the most common location for extrauterine spread in endometrial cancer.
Risk-taking behavior among adolescents with prenatal drug exposure and extrauterine environmental adversity.
So it happens upon arrival, within the first ten seconds of extrauterine experience.
Advanced abdominal pregnancy is defined as a pregnancy of over 20 weeks gestation with a fetus living or showing signs of have lived once and developed.2,3 Extrauterine abdominal pregnancy beyond 20 weeks gestation and with a viable fetus is a rare condition, with an estimated prevalence of one out of 8099 hospital deliveries,1 it can have catastrophic and serious consequences for mother and fetus.