Ectopic pregnancies occur when the fertilized ovum implants outside of the uterine fundus. The most common site of ectopic implantation is the Fallopian tube. Other sites such as the abdomen, ovary, or cervix are far less common but are associated with higher mortality. During the past 40 years its incidence has been steadily increasing concomitant with increased STD rates and associated salpingitis (inflammation of the Fallopian tubes). Such abnormalities of the tubes prevent normal transport of the fertilized egg to the uterus. About 1-2% of pregnancies are ectopic. Ectopic pregnancy is more often detected in women over 35 years of age, multiple pregnancies and in non-white ethnic groups. Today, early intervention saves lives and reduces morbidity, but ectopic pregnancy still accounts for 4% to 10% of pregnancy-related deaths and leads to a high incidence of ectopic site gestations in subsequent pregnancies.
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