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J Emerg Med. 1998 Sep-Oct;16(5):699-703.

Quantitative B-hCG levels less than 1000 mIU/mL in patients with ectopic pregnancy: pelvic ultrasound still useful.

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1
Emergency Physicians of Tidewater, Norfolk, Virginia, USA.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine if pelvic ultrasound was useful in suggesting the diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy in patients with a quantitative B-hCG level less than 1000 mIU/mL. We performed a retrospective review of all patients evaluated and diagnosed with ectopic pregnancy in the emergency departments of seven area hospitals during a ten month period. Sixty-four patients with a confirmed diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy, a pelvic ultrasound, and a quantitative B-hCG level were included in the study. Eighteen (28%) of these patients had a quantitative B-hCG less than 1000 mIU/mL. Sixteen of the eighteen patients (89%) with a B-hCG level less than 1000 mIU/mL had sonographic findings suggestive of ectopic pregnancy, such as fluid in the cul-de-sac, or a complex adnexal or cystic mass. Overall, 25% of all patients diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy during this time period had a quantitative B-hCG level less than 1000 mIU/mL and an ultrasound suggestive for ectopic pregnancy. Pelvic ultrasound is useful as a screening tool in the initial evaluation of suspected ectopic pregnancy, even when the quantitative B-hCG level is below 1000 mIU/mL.

PMID:
9752940
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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