In a regular pregnancy, the fertilized egg goes through the fallopian tube and then attaches itself to the uterus. However, in rare cases, the egg traveling up fallopian tube tends to attach itself to something other than the uterus. It could be fallopian tube - in most cases. This is also the reason that ectopic pregnancy is often referred to as tubal pregnancy. In some cases it may attach to the ovary or belly too. Here are examinations and tests done by the doctor if he/ she doubts the same-
1. Manual pelvic exam
Pelvic exam is done for reviewing the tenderness of the uterus or even the fallopian tubes. If the uterus is not enlarged properly or there seems to be a mass in the pelvic region, there is a chance that the pregnancy is ectopic.
2. Pelvic Ultrasound
Ultrasound of the pelvic area is a common and also more accurate mean of determining the nature of the pregnancy. A pelvic ultrasound can either be transvaginal or abdominal. In both cases the sound waves are used for getting picture of the internal organs. Often, doctors rely on transvaginal ultrasound. Usually the uterus pregnancy is visible 6 weeks post the last menstrual period. But in case of an ectopic pregnancy, there would be no signs of embryo implantation.
3. Blood tests
Blood tests are also taken during this period to check the hormonal levels. The pregnancy hormone (human chorionic gonadotropin or hCG) tends to grow every 2 days or rather doubles. But if the pace of this hCG is lesser than double or every low, it could mean that a case of ectopic pregnancy or a miscarriage exists.
4. Laproscopy - doubles as a test cum treatment
Laparoscopy is another commonly used method to detect ectopic pregnancy. It usually occurs 5 weeks post the pregnancy has been diagnosed. But this is not a very accurate method for the same. Laparoscopy is preferred as a treatment method rather than testing method these days.