Do you ever ask “What are the chances?” about ectopic pregnancy? Does everyone have the same risk?
Or did you just learn that “embryonic age” is different from “gestational age”, and wonder how to convert one number to another?
This month I’ve written two articles for my series in Decoded Pregnancy about those topics.
Converting between Gestational Age and Embryonic Age
My “Calculate Embryonic Age vs Gestational Age: Pregnancy Math” explains how to do the simple arithmetic to convert between the two.
The trick is to remember that “gestational age” is based on your menstrual cycle; most doctors are likely to use this term.
However, “embryonic age” is more accurate when you use in vitro fertilization (IVF) as a fertility treatment.
Either number helps you estimate your expected due date. But you have to know which one to use, whether you do the math by hand using a wall calendar, or find an online due date calculator.
By the way, if you are having trouble conceiving, be sure to ask your doctor whether you should be prescribed a fertility aid. Provincial health plans might cover IVF fertility treatments, but ask about IVF success rates at the clinic.
The Long Odds of Ectopic Pregnancies
My other article is “Probability of Ectopic Pregnancy: The Math Behind Atypical Implantation“.
Health officials recognize ectopic pregnancy as a remote but serious risk. In other words, it is not a likely situation; but if the embryo did not implant in the uterus, your health is at serious risk.
Health Canada includes it in the list of causes of maternal deaths, although it is far from the most frequent. (See table 2 in their site). One of the biggest problems is that your doctor may miss the diagnosis. The early symptoms may not be obvious; and it is rare enough that the symptoms really point to something else. Regardless, the best advice is to ask your doctor to do the tests.
My article explains some of the available statistics, and also how the math works when you have a conditional probability such as both getting pregnant while using an IUD birth control method, and then having an ectopic pregnancy.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and should not be used for diagnosis or to guide treatment without the opinion of a health professional. Any reader who is concerned about his or her health should contact a doctor for advice.
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Thank you for reading about these two articles concerning math for pregnancy.