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A Journal on Obstetrics and Gynecology

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Minerva Ginecologica 1999 January-February;51(1-2):19-26

language: Italian

Diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy

Giambanco V., Giambanco L., Alaimo D.


In pregnancies, the incidence of ectopic pregnancy varies from 1.2% to 1.4%. Diagnostic management of ectopic pregnancy is made by biochemical and ultrasonographic analysis. The evaluation of symptoms and anamnesis improves both comprehension and evaluation of technical data. This review analyzed the risk factors most commonly reported in women with ectopic pregnancy. According to the literature, the improvement of biochemical knowledge has determined the study of many substances : bhCG, specific glycoproteins b1, creatin kinase, renine, progesterone. Transvagi-nal ultrasound examination presents different specificity and sensitivity. When ultrasonic imagining is not clear, it is useful to study uterine and adnexal vascularization by color Doppler and pulsed Doppler. The majority of authors consider laparoscopy as a gold standard for diagnosing an ectopic pregnancy. The endoscopic approach has multiple advantages : it could be in the same time diagnostic and therapeutic. The curettage of uterine cavity has been proposed as a diagnostic tool for analyzing by frozen section the presence or not of chorial villi. In personal opinion, an easy and simple diagnostic management should involve the clinical, biochemical and ultrasonographic procedures. Laparoscopy should be the last step in order to confirm a diagnosis and to establish the best therapeutical approach.

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