An ectopic pregnancy is a complication of pregnancy in which the pregnancy implants outside the uterine cavity or the womb. With rare exceptions, ectopic pregnancies are not viable. Furthermore, they are dangerous for the mother, internal bleeding being a common complication. Most ectopic pregnancies occur in the Fallopian tube (so-called tubal pregnancies), but implantation can also occur in the cervix, ovaries, and abdominal area. An ectopic pregnancy is a potential medical emergency, and, if not treated properly, can lead to death.
If hemorrhage has already occurred, surgical intervention may be necessary. Surgeons use laparoscopy or laparotomy to gain access to the pelvis and can either incise the affected Fallopian and remove only the pregnancy (salpingostomy) or remove the affected tube with the pregnancy (salpingectomy). The first successful surgery for an ectopic pregnancy was performed by Robert Lawson Tait in 1883.
Below is a beautifully done laparoscopic operation for tubal pregnancy. Watch the 1:14 long video that follows.