New Jersey Failure to Diagnose Ectopic Pregnancy Lawyers
Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Passaic County, New Jersey
During a normal menstrual cycle, the ovaries produce an egg that travels through the fallopian tube into the uterus. If the egg becomes fertilized by sperm, it will typically reach the uterus, where it will begin to develop into a baby. However, at times, this process does not occur in the way that it must to allow for a successful pregnancy. When a fertilized egg begins development outside of the uterus, most often in the fallopian tube, this is known as an ectopic pregnancy. Ectopic pregnancies do not allow a fertilized egg to grow and develop, and if medical professionals fail to diagnose or treat this condition in a timely manner, the results can be catastrophic, if not deadly, for the mother.
At Fronzuto Law Group, our skilled medical malpractice attorneys are dedicated to advocating for victims who have suffered harm as a result of medical or hospital negligence. With a commitment to providing unparalleled representation and the utmost attention to every client, we are highly selective with our cases and fully engaged with our clients through every phase of the legal process. Through diligent work and evidence-based case strategies, we have achieved millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for clients in New Jersey and New York. In addition, our founder, Ernest P. Fronzuto, is regularly enlisted to consult on pediatric malpractice cases across the United States because of his unique command of this area of law. When you or someone you love has been injured due to medical malpractice, you face a long road toward recovery. We are honored to serve as your aggressive legal advocates through what can be an extremely challenging time. To discuss your potential claim with one of our knowledgeable lawyers today, contact us at 973-435-4551. Initial consultations are always provided free of charge.
Ectopic Pregancy: The Basics
Ectopic pregnancies are relatively rare, as they occur in approximately 2 percent of pregnancies. However, they are among the primary causes of maternal mortality during the first trimester of pregnancy, and they account for 9 percent of all pregnancy-related maternal deaths. The potentially fatal consequences of ectopic pregnancy are associated with rupturing of the organ that the fertilized egg has attached to. For instance, if the egg has attached to the fallopian tube, it will eventually rupture the tube as it grows larger. This can lead to severe bleeding and death if emergency treatment is not provided. Doctors should be well-versed in the risk factors and symptoms of ectopic pregnancies, order necessary tests to confirm this diagnosis, and take immediate steps to prevent complications, infertility, and potential death of the mother.
Risk Factors for Ectopic Pregnancy
Mothers who meet any of the following criteria are at an increased risk for developing ectopic pregnancies:
- Prior ectopic pregnancy
- Previous termination of a pregnancy
- Previous use of an intrauterine device (IUD)
- Previous treatment for infertility or use of fertility drugs
- Prior tubal ligation or reverse tubal ligation surgery
- Prior surgery in close proximity to the abdomen or uterus
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Sexually transmitted disease
Potential Symptoms of Ectopic Pregnancy
It can be very difficult to identify ectopic pregnancies because the symptoms are highly variable among patients, commonly associated with a wide range of conditions, and at times, not present at all. Physicians must be extremely diligent in monitoring their patients and must order tests when the possibility of an ectopic pregnancy exists. Some of the potential symptoms of ectopic pregnancy include:
- Abdominal pain
- Vaginal bleeding
- Amenorrhea (missing a menstrual cycle)
- Pain in the pelvis
- Low blood pressure
- Pain in the shoulder
Ectopic Pregnancy Diagnosis and Treatment
Physicians can use a combination of physical exams and tests to confirm an ectopic pregnancy diagnosis. For instance, a specific hormone known as human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is used to confirm that a woman is pregnant with an at-home pregnancy test. In normal pregnancies, hCG levels consistently increase, while in ectopic pregnancies these levels increase far less quickly. In addition to testing for hCG, doctors can also utilize ultrasounds to confirm ectopic pregnancies.
If and when a doctor diagnoses ectopic pregnancy, he or she must act immediately to remove the egg, thus preventing it from further developing and rupturing. There are several courses of action to achieve this. Depending on the specific case and the size of the fertilized egg, a doctor can prescribe medication to dissolve the egg, remove the egg by making a relatively small incision in the belly button, or perform surgery. Fortunately, most women are able to have healthy pregnancies after experiencing an ectopic pregnancy. However, those who experience a rupture may be forced to have a section of their fallopian tube removed and may suffer from infertility in the future. If a ruptured fallopian tube is not treated immediately, severe bleeding may result in death.
Contact our Passaic County NJ Ectopic Pregnancy Misdiagnosis Attorneys
One of our seasoned medical malpractice lawyers will be happy to answer all of your questions and to outline your available legal options. Simply contact our Passaic county offices at 973-435-4551 (toll free at 888-409-0816) or submit an online contact form to schedule a free initial consultation.
Resources: “Ectopic Pregnancy and Miscarriage: Diagnosis and Initial Management in Early Pregnancy of Ectopic Pregnancy and Miscarriage,” National Library of Medicine.