ectopic pregnancy i feel so alone

(28 Posts)
han1001 Fri 28-Mar-14 18:10:21

I feel so alone and upset and need to chat to people who are also going through this. I found out i was pregnant 2 weeks ago and me and my partner were so happy. We went to the first scan cause the doctors wanted to know how many weeks i was. During the scan the doctor said the baby wasn't in my womb and that my left tube was dilated. He said it could be ectopic and sent me to get blood tests. Me and my partner were in shock and i started crying and collapsed in the hospital. I could see strange colours and my hearing went funny. I got taken into a&e and they did tests and i got moved to a ward. The doctor then came up and confirmed it was an ectopic pregnancy and gave me two options either have the injections or surgery. I chose the surgery as my left tube was damaged and they removed it in the operation. This was 3 days ago and im trying to recover. I just hate how we had no choice but to get our baby removed and i feel so alone. My partner has 2 children from a previous relationship and i feel like a failure. IM only 23 and scared i wont be able to have children and wish i was still pregnant. Is there anyone here who can talk with me?

Hey OP. Sorry you're having a horrible time. No experience but I was recently in hospital and a girl on my ward had this happen and have a tube removed and she was told she had just as much chance of conceiving again naturally as anyone. I hope that is some reassurance.

Take care of yourself.

addictedtosugar Fri 28-Mar-14 18:23:31

han I'm so sorry to hear your story. You are recovering from a operation, and grieving. Please be gentle on yourself.
I found the chat boards on the Ectopic Pregnancy Trust site really helpful after my Ectopic pregnancy. There is loads of accurate information there too. I went back to work after 2 weeks, and in retorspect should have taken a third week off.

Although maybe too early for you to contemplate, I have had 2 successful pregnancies following my tube removal, both conceived in 2 cycles.

Look after yourself. thanks

vintagelife Thu 03-Apr-14 12:34:04

Han- sorry to hear your sad news. I have also recently had keyhole surgery for an ectopic pregnancy. (just over a week ago) Just wanted to let you know i'm hear if you need to chat.

Addictedtosugar- I agree the Ectopic Pregnancy trust is a great source of info and support.

I wan to share my story as I haven't actually written it all down yet and I think it can help the healing process? This is long, sorry.

I have found it helpful to read about peoples experiences as I didn't really know much about ectopic pregnancy before I experienced it, I had heard of pregnancies that occur outside the womb and not being viable but I suppose as it's quite rare and I wasn't TTC I just never heard much about it. I hope sharing my experience can help someone in some way.

My symptoms started late February. Oddly I got abdominal pains after eating-especially spicy food, this could be a coincidence but it seemed to somehow irritate something inside. It never even crossed my mind that I might be pregnant, which sounds ridiculous now, but the symptoms I was having seemed more food related at the time! A while after i'd eaten I would suddenly get the urge to go to the toilet, (didn't) I wanted to be sick, (never happened) I was light headed, dizzy, I had ringing in my ears, then the feeling passed. It was no more than a few minutes.

I went to the gp as I had to stay away from home with work and wanted to make sure I was ok! he asked me about my periods (were they regular, were they painful, I told him I was due to come on, he ruled out appendicitis as my tummy 'felt soft' and I wasn't in pain and felt fine, so I was told to come back if it happened again. I went away on my work trip and thankfully nothing happened while I was away.

The day I came back however, I had another episode of pain (worse this time) so made an emergency appt to see gp. When I explained she just had a look on her face that was like 'yeah i've seen this all before, you're pregnant.' Sure enough, she did the test and I was. I was shocked but happy. She convinced me my symptoms were completely normal, my body was adjusting.

We went home, had dinner and a few hours later in bed I suddenly shot up, had UNBEARABLE pain in my lower abdomen, my stomach, my sides and it even spread up to my neck (they say with an ectopic you get shoulder tip pain but it was my neck, on my right side-the side of the ectopic.) I couldn't lie back down, It was like shooting pain/spasm? hard to explain. Also, dizzy, faint, nauseous.

We phoned 111, was asked lots of questions then was told to get myself to the out of hours doctor. We went, I tried to lie down on the bed so she could feel my tummy and I instantly screamed and flinched and I just couldn't physically lie down. She did another pregnancy test, said possibly a miscarriage, gave me cocodamol for the pain, said I needed to have blood work and go to EPU. She said I could either wait to have it done (I'd have been waiting for hours-it was the middle of the night) or I could go home and try to get some sleep and see gp first thing and get reffered to EPU. I decided on the second option, finally managed to sleep for a few hours propped up in bed with pillows and dosed up on painkillers. My stomach muscles were very painful the next day sad

Next day went back to the gp. She suspected appendicitis and sent me off to hospital where I had blood work done, and yet another urine test. The gynae specialist also did an internal which wasn't horrid, I cried through it (not through pain but cause of the whole traumatic experience!) My HCG was very high- think it was 5000? so they booked me in for an early ultrasound in a few days time. I spent most of the day on EPU not being allowed to eat or drink then they discharged me.

Ultrasound day came around and sonographer couldn't see anything, apart from a 'cystic structure' which I was later told was a red herring... I was about 6 wks pregnant at this stage so she said it could just be too early, or it could be ectopic. Had more blood work done, HCG going up a lot but not doubling.

I had to wait for about a week to repeat the ultrasound which was the longest week of my life! I was advised that if I had pain or very heavy bleeding to go to a&e. I started bleeding shortly after this conversation. At first it was brownish spotting, then bright read blood for 2 days, then brown spotting for a day or 2. Me and OH were so upset and pretty much had to mentally prep ourselves for the worst. Up until then we'd tried to remain hopeful. By the time my 2nd scan came around the bleeding had stopped. She did ultrasound and transvaginal exam. Said cystic structure was gone and she could see 'something' on the right side with fetal pole and no heartbeat. We had to wait for what felt like forever before being seen again by the nurse.

Then everything happened really fast. I had to have emergency surgery. I was having a cannula put in, blood taken, the registrar came in to explain what needed to happen. I had to sign forms saying they could remove a fallopian tube or maybe even an ovary. It was overwhelming and I started to cry (was really trying not to!)

When I came round the surgeon explained what i'd had done but I was so out of it....all I really heard was there had been internal bleeding, my bits were stuck together with blood, they managed to remove the pregnancy without removing a tube, because the pregnancy was actually on my ovary. They had to take part of my ovary away but it will still work normally apparently. They said I can get pregnant again (there is an increased risk of another ectopic- and when/if i get pregnant again I have to inform them straight away so i can be monitored closely.)

I was in surgery for quite a bit longer than normal with this procedure, my appendix was apparently sticking to everything too. I had loads of morphine for the pain and was eventually wheeled up to the ward.

Next day a different doc came to see me and explained everything again. This happened 2 more times with different doctors for some reason. I felt really confused as to why they kept saying the same thing to me. I was in such a state of shock that I feel like I didn't ask enough questions. All I keep thinking is;

Why did this happen?
What have I done wrong?
What is wrong with me?
What are the actual chances of this happening again?
what are the actual chances of conceiving again?
Were my tubes and ovaries examined for scars?
What if I contracted an infection years ago? (I have always been very careful but I am so paranoid)

I stayed in for 2 nights then got sent home. I've gone in twice for blood tests and the HCG has dropped significantly, which is good to hear but at the same time so awful. The nurse who phoned with the results said to do a pregnancy test in 10 days just to make sure everything is gone, which I am dreading.

I'm signed off work til mid April and i'm dreading facing work.
When I first found out I was pregnant/It could be complicated I met up with my line manager who was brilliant and said just take as much time as you need, and that she wouldn't tell anyone anything.
Unfortunately I work with a very gossipy group of people who will no doubt have come up with loads of conspiracy theories about me.
All I've asked my manager to pass on is I've had abdominal pain and had surgery (what do you think I should tell them? I don't want to tell the truth).

I've been trying to get out of the house a bit and trying to distract myself but I keep blaming myself for what's happened. I am sure I didn't ever get an sti but I haven't been tested before, i'm so paranoid its all my fault. I'm thinking of going to get tested but I feel so stupid about it.

Its a very strange feeling going from being quite laid back about having a baby and now feeling like all I want is to be pregnant again. I feel like I took it for granted that i'd just be able to have a baby when I want.

I hope anyone going through this is doing ok- please let me know how you are. And well done if you got to the end of this post! Lots of love. xx

toobreathless Fri 04-Apr-14 00:12:49

So sorry to hear that you are going through this han and vintage be kind to yourself, it is a lot to come to terms with. I was devastated, not only be the loss of my pregnancy but also by the potential impact on my fertility as I saw it (I simply did not believe the consultant who told me my fertility would likely not be affected)

I had an ectopic pregnancy in 2010 and my left tube was removed. Our daughters arrived in 2011 and 2013. Both conceived incredibly easily like addicted

You are at higher risk of a further ectopic but there is little you can do to reduce the risk with the exception of stopping smoking if you are a smoker. You need to see your GP early in your next pregnancy for an early scan to check all is ok. The majority of women who have an ectopic go on to have no problems in their next pregnancy.

Please pm me if you would like to chat about anything.

han1001 Fri 04-Apr-14 12:19:53

IM so sorry to hear your story vintagelife. I keep blaming myself too. I thought my boyfriend didn't want the baby when i was pregnant so i suggested we get rid of it which isn't what i wanted but now we had to get it removed and i feel horrible. We both wanted the baby and my partner used to kiss my stomach everyday and say he loved both of us lots and now we dont have one breaks my heart. My body still feels like its pregnant but my mind doesnt its strange. I have been off work for 2 weeks and been getting depressed. My partner now wants to wait until we are settled and things are better before we try again but i just want to be pregnant now. Does anyone else feel scared and depressed about life in general now ?

vintagelife Fri 04-Apr-14 15:06:21

Hi Han, I can completely relate to your feelings. Discovering you're pregnant can be a huge shock, try not to feel guilty about not knowing what to do.
I know what you mean about feeling pregnant still, its very strange to try and get your head around isn't it? I think its just one of those things that improves with time.
One of the hardest things was seeing my boyfriend upset. sad He seemed so happy when we found out I was pregnant and I feel bad that it didn't work out. We haven't talked about ttc again yet, I think i'll ask him what he thinks about it soon. I'm a little bit scared he might say we should wait so I don't wana ask!
I feel like I sort of can't be bothered with anything, like everything seems like more of an effort, and the thought of work seems so insignificant, like i'm going to struggle to care about it when I go back, which isn't like me.
But.... i'm trying to plan little things to look forward to. My best friend is coming to visit me over the weekend, I'm sure it'll help just to talk about it all with her. I have been taking it easy and doing small tasks like walking to the shops...Have you been doing these sort of things at all? x

han1001 Fri 04-Apr-14 15:37:05

Yeah its heart breaking watching your partner get upset it made me feel like a failure. I hate the thought of only having one tube now i don't feel like a complete women if that makes sense. Whats worse is that my partner has 2 children from a previous relationship and it feels like a constant rub in my face that i cant have a baby with my partner soon. I have actually avoided them as much as possible cause i just get upset. I haven't been out at all for 2 weeks but go back to work Monday as i think taking my mind off things will do me good buy i know what you mean about not caring about work too. Yeah things to look forward to are good im going on a spa break with my partner in a few weeks which will be nice. It sounds silly but since this whole thing im scared to go out incase i collapse again and cause a huge scene like i did when i found out about my ectopic pregnancy i collapsed and caused a scene. Aw i hope you can try again soon for a bubba. I doubt my partner will want to try again for a long time.

vintagelife Fri 04-Apr-14 16:50:37

I understand what you say about feeling a bit incomplete, I think its natural to blame ourselves but we really shouldn't. When they told me about the operation they said if they did need to remove a tube it wouldn't affect fertility as the other tube would compensate.

I'm struggling with getting my head around why it happened. Its hard to accept there is no explanation. I also feel like my period won't come back, which is just mad!

I don't think its silly you feel nervous about going out, the thing that forced me to go out was to drop off my sick note at work and then having to go to the post office. I was nervy but after that it got a lot easier.

Part of me thinks being at work would help, its just the initial first day back i'm not looking forward to! (more to do with the people I work with being 'inquisitive' tbh). Once you have been back in a routine for a bit you might feel better about seeing your bf's kids? for now though you just need to concentrate on you smile

The spa break sounds good, it sounds like you're bf is supportive and is probably right to let you recover completely before ttc? You are young, you still have time xx

han1001 Fri 04-Apr-14 18:23:36

Yeah that's what my work people are going to be like too. Everyone is going to bring it up and i don't feel like explaining it multiple times and then i hate it when they look all upset for you then it makes you feel worse.

yeah we need to focus on ourselves for a while until we feel better. It doesn't help that my partners ex is causing us trouble all the time.

i got told after the op that i have a higher chance of having another ectopic pregnancy so im quite scared to try for a while even though i want to.
i got told it could have happened because of the mini pill or morning after pill i had taken in the past.

addictedtosugar Fri 04-Apr-14 19:22:36

Vintage
I'm sorry to hear your story.
With people I didn't want to know what had happened (I was at a wedding 10 days post op - it was obvious something had happened) I just said "emergency abdominal surgery". Most people then assumed it was appendicitis. I didn't correct them.

han please take it easy at work.

thanks

vintagelife Fri 04-Apr-14 21:28:37

addictedtosugar- how long were you off work? I was thinking of going down the appendicitis story route.

Han- The doctors also said to me I had an increased risk of another ectopic but they didn't say what the risk was....did they mention that to you? I've read so many different things....I probably need to lay off google. Also I didn't realise that about the morning after pill.
I'm scared of getting pregnant incase it happens again, but at the same time i'm so attached to the idea.
I can't stand the idea of the sympathy and the gossiping either, so I think with people at work I might have to say I had my appendix out- I'll just have to remember its 'gone' though!

han1001 Fri 04-Apr-14 22:26:14

They said if i kept the tube it could happen again. They just said its 15 - 20% higher risk of another ectopic.
that's how i feel im scared of trying again but really want a baby now i don't know what to do?

addictedtosugar Sat 05-Apr-14 07:08:16

Vintage I went back after 2 weeks, and in reality I should have stayed at home another week.

I think there is a higher risk of ectopic once you've had one, but it depends on why you got the ectopic. If it was just one of those things, you should be fine. If you were born with narrow fallopian tubes (I've no idea if this is a thing) your more likely to have a repeat, because there was a reason for it, iyswim.

I went in with the attitude that I wanted to know what the outcome would be. If I got a baby (and I did, twice) I'd have won. If I had a repeat ectopic, I'd be gutted, but at least I know what the future held, and could plan accordingly, rather than endless "I wonder what life could have been like". Those first few weeks from get a positive to an early scan were very, very, anxious tho.

vintagelife Sat 05-Apr-14 09:22:17

I had a week off while I was having episodes of pain and going back and forth to doctors/hospital, then the following week I was meant to be on annual leave for a week, but ended up in surgery...so when I was signed off by the hospital for two weeks from that day, I asked work if I could have my annual leave at the end of that time, just to give myself extra recovery time. I have quite a physical job so don't want to take any risks. I've been off for ages. :/
Doc's said it was one of those things but I can't help but think they don't really know. I keep thinking because it was on the ovary why didn't it even make it into the fallopian tube??
Yeah its bound to be extra nerve wracking going for scans again sad
I'm scared too han, i'm 29 and I feel like I want to find out soon whether i'm going to have fertility issues. I got used to the idea of giving birth at the age of 30.

han1001 Sat 05-Apr-14 10:05:18

IM going to work after 2 weeks cause im a administrator so i can sit down lots which is good but i still feel groggy in the head. I think its stress and the anathestic still wearing off. I think today im going out for the first time and im not gonna lie im scared i feel like this whole experience has broken me and my confidence.

the doctors said it could have happened randomly but i reckon there is just something wrong with me. In the past i had scans cause i had the most painful periods and now this i feel its connected. Even though they couldn't find anything wrong. When they did the op they found a cyst but they didnt say what they did with it.

vintagelife Sat 05-Apr-14 10:55:07

Just to say han you will be fine when you go out today, and hopefully you will feel lots better for it. I also felt quite dizzy and tired for ages after. It was due to low iron from the blood loss, on top of the anesthetic...and the trauma. I'm on iron supplements.
I understand what you mean about not believing it can be random, it would make things easier to understand if we had answers.
Good luck today xxxx

han1001 Sat 05-Apr-14 12:39:30

Thank you. Went round toys are us as its my step sons birthday soon. It was hard looking at all the baby things and knowing im not having one now.
yeah i know what you mean. I felt dizzy and sleepy when i went out it wasn't nice. Told my partner i cant face going out for lunch really. I might ask my doctor about iron tablets cause i feel the same. I hope your feeling better both of you. Vintage how long ago did you have your op ?

vintagelife Sun 06-Apr-14 10:15:04

I had the operation Tuesday 25th March. I'm feeling better physically, my wounds have mostly healed, and they don't look as bad as i'd imagined when I saw all the bandages afterwards. Hope work goes ok for you tomorrow, take it easy and let me know how you get on.

han1001 Sun 06-Apr-14 11:03:00

Omg that's the day i had my operation 25/03 i got pit to sleep around 12 30. My wounds still have the stitches and it looks like they are healing well. Do you have any other kids ? I saw my step sons yesterday and ended up running around in the park playing and i probably shouldn't cause i now feel exhausted. IM not looking forward to work at the moment. If i start feeling ill im going straight home lol. Thanks

I was signed off work for 6 weeks at the insistence of the nurse who was caring for m e. Turns out she was right. Although I was physically pretty much healed after 2 weeks, it took a lot longer to emotionally process what had happened and stop crying all over the place.
I'm so sorry you are going through this, give yourself time and kindness. I know many women (myself included) who have children after an ectopic.

vintagelife Sun 06-Apr-14 12:41:06

Thanks for your support MrsCakes. I'm glad to hear you went on to have children. If you don't mind me asking, when you got pregnant again when did they do your first scan? Did they monitor your blood very closely?
Han- Oh my god, I had my op at about 2.30 pm. Did they discharge you from hospital the next day? I was kept in for two nights. I still feel a little bit achey in places sometimes, especially if i've been out. And I still get tired. I don't have any kids, no. It's good you managed to play with your stepsons.
Don't force yourself to go into work if you don't feel up to it, but if you do go, like you say don't hesitate just get yourself home. Remember your health is more important smile

Well my pregnancy was a little different as it was an IVF pregnancy. The op for the ectopic revealed that endometrosis had destroyed the other tube (the one without the ectopic). Having an ectopic once also increases the risk of an ectopic during IVF, so I do feel very blessed.

han1001 Mon 07-Apr-14 10:00:43

I was discharged the next day at lunch time. I went to the doctors this morning and she cut my stitches and said they lie about the fact they dissolve. Vintage do you feel achy and bruised around the wounds or where things were taken out. In hospital they actually showed me the tube etc it wasn't nice. Did they show you yours? My doctor also said i could have an extra 2 weeks off work if i wanted which is good.

vintagelife Mon 07-Apr-14 10:22:35

I can't actually see any stitches, could you see yours? Yeah the wounds feel hard and bruised. I also have a bit of a dull ache on the left side which is a bit strange because the ectopic was on the right. Sometimes there's a bit of a twinge on that side, which is where they removed part of the ovary. My tubes were left in, it was just part of my ovary they took away, they didn't show me. Did you ask about iron tablets? Did you decide to take more time off work?

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now