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[p]This is a little uncomfortable for me to share, so please bear with me.[/p][p]When I found out I was pregnant back in April 2006, I was more than a little surprised. My daughter Katy - who was born three months early - was just seven months old at the time. While it wasn't the ideal time to have another baby, I was still delighted to be expecting.[/p][p]But things felt 'off' from the start. While I took several positive pregnancy tests, the ones I took at the doctor's surgery showed up as negative. I also started to experience intermittent bleeding. My GP said I was probably having a miscarriage and sent me away to ‘let nature take its course.’ [/p][p]I was still bleeding a few months later, so my doctor sent me for a ultrasound scan, which showed that the pregnancy had implanted outside of my uterus - a condition commonly referred to as an ectopic pregnancy. Left untreated an ectopic pregnancy will eventually rupture causing internal haemorrhaging and - in some cases - death. [/p][p]I was prepped immediately for an emergency surgical procedure to remove the pregnancy. Sadly this was unsuccessful. [/p][p]The most common site for an ectopic pregnancy is in the fallopian tube. In my case, the pregnancy had implanted in a vascular area in between my uterus and fallopian tubes, known as the cornua. Without my consent to perform a full hysterectomy (the safest way to remove an ectopic pregnancy of this kind) the surgeon felt it was too risky to try and remove the pregnancy. My only alternative was to try a course of Methotrexate (a drug typically used to treat cancer) to stop the pregnancy growing. [/p][p]It took two courses of Methotrexate - and months of close medical supervision - to end the pregnancy. I was left with massive scarring in and around my uterus, which has meant I’ve been unable to have any more children - something that has been difficult to come to terms with. [/p][p]Yet I very nearly missed the symptoms - as did my doctor. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that I self-diagnosed myself on the internet. Most women know pain and bleeding can be a sign of ectopic pregnancy. But (and I'm sorry if this is a little too much information) one of the other common signs of ectopic pregnancy (along with positive/negative results on pregnancy tests due to fluctuating hormones) is an unusual brown bleeding - rather like prune juice. I had this all along, but had no idea it was something to be concerned about until I ‘Googled’ it. Talking to my female friends afterwards, they didn’t either.[/p][p]That’s why I’m running the London Marathon for the Ectopic Pregnancy Trust in 2018. I’d love more women to be aware of the signs and symptoms of ectopic pregnancy so they don’t leave it too late to get help - like I almost did. It’s one of those things that can be a bit embarrassing to talk about (I have to confess I feel a bit self-conscious sharing some of the information I have here) but if helps save lives and/or women’s fertility - I think it’s worth it. [/p][p][br][/p]