Question: I had a six weeks miscarriage last week and my symptoms were those of ectopic
pregnancy, pain on one side of my abdomen and after two weeks of missed period. It
ending up just like normal period but heavier and more painful but it seems to be
clearing now. My question is could ectopic pregnancy clear by itself without any
medical help and do I still need to see the doctor? please help, thanks. J.K. (UK)
Answer: I am sorry to hear of your pregnancy loss. Even though the symptoms were
quite suggestive, it is not necessarily the case that yours was an ectopic pregnancy.
It is also true that an ectopic pregnancy can resolve spontaneously through what
is known as a tubal abortion. If bleeding inside the pelvis is limited, the symptoms
may not be too pronounced and will quickly resolve.
In your case, if symptoms have now resolved, you can safely rest easy. However, as
an extra insurance, it may be worthwhile to perform a pregnancy test. This should
have reverted to negative by now. If this is positive, you should see your doctor
Effects of Down’s syndrome
Question: Severity of Down’s syndrome. A. (UK)
Answer: Your question was very brief and it wasn't clear to me what you wanted to
know. If you want to know the degree of learning disability of a Down's syndrome
individual then it is that most will have a mental age of a five year old into their
adulthood. Physically, a significant proportion of these children will be born with
cardiac (heart) defects, some of them quite major.
How soon does the Pregnancy test become positive?
Question: I had sex on the 10th using the withdrawal method and this was only a week
after my period. The following weekend I noticed a slight queasiness, change in
the appearance of my nipples darker, larger, a little bumpy. During last week I had
bad cramps, nausea, dizzy/tired spells, and a more than usual amount of milky discharge.
However I did a pregnancy test this morning and it was negative. Shouldn't it have
shown by now if I were pregnant (I'm not due for another period until early next
month)? Is there a chance I could still be? And if not what else could explain these
symptoms? L. (UK)
Answer: While it is possible to get a positive pregnancy test two weeks after conception
takes place, it is virtually impossible to have pregnancy symptoms such as the ones
you describe so early after conception is supposed to have taken place. I cannot
say that you are not pregnant but I can confidently say the symptoms you have felt
are not due to pregnancy unless you conceived before that sex act on the 10th. In
any case, you should have clarity any time now as your period is supposed to be due.
Pulmonary embolism in pregnancy
Question: What causes pulmonary embolism in pregnancy - can it be overproduction
of vitamin K? If so, why does this happen? M.W. (UK)
Answer: During pregnancy there is increased production of the clotting factors (not
Vitamin K) in the blood. That is a normal physiological change. This combined with
a more sluggish blood flow increases the probability of clot formation especially
in the lower limbs. You will, ofcourse, know that when such a clot is dislodged,
it could end up the lungs hence the pulmonary embolism. There are individuals with
conditions such as Thrombophilia syndrome who are at increased risk of deep vein
thrombosis (DVT) anyway. The risk of DVT and possible pulmonary embolism complication
is increased further by pregnancy. Pulmonary embolism (PE) in pregnancy is discussed
in more detail here:
Problems after spinal block
Question: I had c-section 3½ month ago using spinal block. After 20-30 days following
the delivery i have pain in my arms especially it was like vein stretch, the vain
from which we count pulse. That is quite better now but sometimes it start again.
I also get pain and numbness in my feet and i feel difficulty when i get up from
sleep and try to walk but it get better after some time. If i stand up for 20-30
min, i go for walk there is always pain in my feet. I also feel heaviness in my feet.
Is it normal , will go away with the pass of time? Thanks. S. (USA)
Answer: A spinal block does not and should not give you any lingering symptoms such
as the ones you describe. I can understand your blaming these on the spinal but it
is almost certainly not responsible. If these symptoms are persisting, I would suggest
that you see your doctor to investigate and establish the real cause.
Macrobid and Cipro use in pregnancy
Question: My wife is 8 weeks pregnant now and suffering with Urinary tract infection
right from the begining of pregnancy. Doctors prescribed Cipro antibiotics during
second week of pregnancy and now she is using Macrobid. Is there any harm to the
baby because of these antibiotics? Could you please give me some suggestions? S
Answer: The use of Cipro (the generic name of which is Ciprofloxacin) in pregnancy
is discouraged but not absolutely contra-indicated. This is because animal studies
have shown interference in joints development. However, there has been numerous studies
on women who have used this antibiotic during pregnancy and no adverse effects on
their babies have been observed. The general policy therefore is to use only where
Macrobid (Nitrofurantoin) is perfectly safe to use in pregnancy. It does not actually
reach the baby. The only caution is the end of pregnancy especially if the mother
is planning to breast-feed. This antibiotic does pass into breast milk and a breast-fed
baby can be harmed by it.