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Words I Don’t Want to See Together – “Hepatic Ectopic Pregnancy”

December 9, 2008

A colleague sent me this citation, and not many things gross me out, but this made me *shudder.*

Shippey SH, Bhoola SM, Royek AB, Long ME. Diagnosis and management of hepatic ectopic pregnancy. Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Feb;109(2 Pt2):544-6.

Okay, first, an ectopic pregnancy is one that’s outside the uterus. “Hepatic” refers to the liver. So what we’re talking about here is a pregnancy that’s happening not in the uterus, but in the liver. Argh.

The case report notes that the woman presented “with acute onset of right-sided abdominal pain.” Great. That’s the basic, classic appendicitis. One day I’m going to have appendicitis and be convinced that I have a liver-fetus. Or vice versa.

In the discussion, the authors note that “when the placenta is securely adherent to the viscera providing its blood supply, it should be left in the abdominal cavity.” Urgh.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. December 9, 2008 8:36 pm

    Wow. That has to be a one in a million case.

  2. December 9, 2008 8:54 pm

    How is that even physically possible? I understand how an ectopic pregnancy can form, in one of the organs attached to the ovaries or the uterus, but the liver isn’t anywhere near there!

  3. Freaky Weasel permalink
    December 9, 2008 9:45 pm

    I’m no doctor or nurse or woman. I would guess, when the egg is released that it isn’t ‘caught’ by the (spelling likely jacked) fembriated ends of the Falopian tubes, and drifts into the abdominal cavity adhering to viscera including the liver.

    How it is fertilized is beyond me.

  4. December 10, 2008 8:58 am

    I’m wondering if maybe the egg is fertilized in the fallopian tube normally, but then rather than getting stuck there (as with most ectopic pregnancies) or progressing on to the uterus, “escapes” into the abdomen.

  5. December 10, 2008 4:31 pm

    At least that one was identified early. The ectopic pregnancies that freak me out are the ones that go to term:

    Ovary baby survives against oddsFour Cases of Advanced and Full-Term Ectopic Pregnancy

  6. Susanna permalink
    December 15, 2008 4:04 pm

    I’m reminded of the Schwarzenegger film where he becomes pregnant. There the embryo is stuck in his… stomach, I think, which is ridiculous of course, as it would have been digested.

    What a pity the script writers didn’t do a little more research and come up with this scenario.

  7. January 13, 2009 9:53 pm

    My question is how it would migrate to the liver. Bizarre.

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