Most often treatment of ectopic pregnancy is surgically. Usually the doctor’s goal is to remove the pregnancy while preserving fertility.
Which technique the doctor uses (laparoscopy or laparotomy) will depend on the medical status of the woman. Laparotomy involves a large incision, which takes longer to recover from. Laparoscopy is a less extensive technique, which involves a smaller incision made near or in the naval. The surgeon inserts a long, thin instrument, called a laparoscope, into the pelvic area. The instrument is a hollow tube with a light on one end. The laparoscope allows the surgeon to remove the ectopic pregnancy and repair or remove the affected fallopian tube.
Occasionally, treatment with a medication called methotrexate can be used to dissolve an ectopic pregnancy, in a non-emergency situation. Because of the need for early diagnosis and because the drug (which is a cancer drug) has many side effects, it may not be suitable for all women.