Review article| Volume 259, P113-118, April 2021

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Retroperitoneal ectopic pregnancy: A literature review of reported cases

Published:February 17, 2021DOI:


      To provide reference for the diagnosis and treatment of retroperitoneal ectopic pregnancy (REP), we conducted a review on all of the reported cases in English by summarizing their clinical manifestation, diagnosis, management and prognosis. A total of 25 literatures including 26 REP cases were collected from PubMed database. 40 % (10/25) of the patients had a history of tubal pregnancy, 65.4 % (17/26) was spontaneous pregnancy, and the average period of amenorrhea was 56.7 days. Abdominal pain is the most common (53.8 %, 14/26) symptom of REP. Ultrasound is the main method of diagnosing REP. Only 30.8 % (8/26) were diagnosed as REP at the initial visit, and 55.6 % (10/18) of those who were misdiagnosed received unnecessary invasive treatment. The pregnancy sites of REP are complex, and it can be simply divided into pelvic REP and abdominal REP. Due to preoperative misdiagnosis, 46.2 % (9/26) of REP experienced two or more treatments. Except for 2 patients who received local methotrexate (MTX) injection in the gestational sac, the other 24 patients underwent surgical treatment, and all patients had a good prognosis. Due to insufficient knowledge, the rate of misdiagnosis and mistreatment of REP is high. The key to diagnosing REP is to consider the possibility of REP and the scanning field during examination can cover the site of pregnancy. Local MTX injection and surgical resection are both effective methods for the treatment of REP.


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