Regina mother urges pregnant women to get tests to avoid ectopic pregnancy complications

·4 min read

A Regina woman is sharing her story of losing a pregnancy in hopes it will help others.

Micah Lynnes had to undergo emergency surgery this fall because of a Fallopian tube rupture from an undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy.

An ectopic pregnancy is when a fertilized egg implants in a Fallopian tube rather than the uterus.

"It happens in about one in 50 pregnancies. And unfortunately, it always ends up in loss of the baby, but it can be treated early on with medication if it's caught through blood work and ultrasounds," said Lynnes, who has two children.

"Unfortunately, mine went unnoticed and it kept growing and it ended up rupturing my fallopian tube when I was about seven weeks pregnant."

Lynnes's ordeal began in August when she found out she was pregnant.

About four weeks into the pregnancy Lynnes was travelling to Edmonton for her daughter Indy's second open-heart surgery.

On the drive up, Lynnes suffered severe cramps and bleeding and she thought it might be an early miscarriage.

She saw a doctor in Edmonton to confirm it was a miscarriage.

"He said, you know, I think it is an early miscarriage. We don't need to do any tests. We'll just let it run its course because by that time, I didn't have any pain or anything," Lynnes said.

"So unfortunately, he didn't do any blood work or ultrasound at the time."

Her daughter had heart surgery and they returned to Regina.

About a week later, Lynnes experienced intense abdominal pain.

"I called 811 and they said, 'You know, if the pain does return, go to emergency right away.'"

She went to bed that night with little pain, but she felt a heaviness in her abdomen.

The next morning the pain was so severe they called an ambulance to take her to the hospital.

Lynnes had an ultrasound done and was told she'd had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy, not a miscarriage, and was having internal bleeding.

She had surgery to remove the Fallopian tube, but had complications with more internal bleeding and ended up having to go back for more surgery.

Looking back, Lynnes wishes she had demanded to have tests done, but she was caught up with her daughter's heart surgery.

"Had I been in Saskatchewan, would I have got the test? I don't know. I was in Edmonton and we were so busy with Indy's surgery and I wasn't having any pain. So I thought, you know, yeah, we'll just let it run its course," she said.

"I really should have pushed harder for the blood work and ultrasound because they're so simple."

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. Lynnes wants to make other women aware of this issue.

"If [you] are pregnant, you should see your doctor right away, get the blood work, get the ultrasound, even if it's your 10th baby or loss … you just never know what could be going on," she said.

"If someone doesn't want to do those tests for you, push for yourself because it could end up in a situation like mine, which I really hope that doesn't happen to anyone."

She said connecting with other women with similar stories has been a silver lining for her ordeal.

"I've had so many people reach out to me and share their stories, stories I had never heard before. And they thanked me for sharing mine and for teaching about sort of what some of the symptoms of ectopic are," Lynnes said.

"I'm so blessed that I do have two kids at home. And this was my first loss. And I know so many women who have faced many, many losses. And it was just so nice to be able to support each other and be able to share our experiences."

Lynnes and Indy are now both recovering from their respective surgeries. Lynnes said her surgery gave her a better understanding of what Indy has been going through.

"I just have a very small glimpse of what she feels like and maybe why she's fearful or why she's feeling the way she's feeling."

Lynnes said Indy has been very supportive through all of their trials.

"When the ambulance came to pick me up, she was giving me a pep talk saying, 'Mummy, the doctors are going to take good care of you.They're going to fix you up. Don't you worry.' Exactly the things that we say," she said.

"[After the surgery] she wanted to see my scars and look at our scars together. It was just so precious."