Methotrexate is given to people with autoimmune diseases, for it works directly on inhibiting the growth of certain cells and also keeps the immune system in check. The drug specializes in targeting the production of cells that grow and spread quickly, such as cancer cells and those that appear on the placenta during conception. This makes Methotrexate a very dangerous drug, for it can kill embryonic and fetal cells. It also makes the drug an effective treatment for getting rid of an ectopic pregnancy.
Methotrexate was first created for the purpose of treating cancer, and nowadays it is used for several types of cancer including breast cancer and leukemia as well as other autoimmune diseases, especially rheumatoid arthritis. Methotrexate is prescribed only when the patient understands the full effects of the medicine especially in the area of reproduction, for the drug can cause severe birth defects or fetal death. An ectopic pregnancy is when the embryo implants itself on an area other than the uterus, such as the fallopian tube, and this can risk the life of the mother or at least damage the uterus or tubes in such a way that future ovulation or conception will be compromised. A Methotrexate injection or more are commonly used to end cases of ectopic pregnancies. The Methotrexate can essentially fight off the growing embryonic cells. The patient will need to get regular tests of HCG to monitor the presence of the fetus, and a drop of the HCG hormone will mean that the ectopic pregnancy has been successfully terminated.
It’s only rarely that an ectopic pregnancy can be carried full term without harming both the mother and the baby, and doctors will generally advise to have the pregnancy terminated as soon as possible, for the longer an ectopic pregnancy is borne, the more difficult it can be to properly end and the more serious the effects on the mother’s body can get. And if the patient starts taking Methotrexate while unknowingly pregnant, a miscarriage can be an unfortunate side effect of the drug. Methotrexate will need to be paired with an effective birth control method, one that does not cause side effects or interact with the drug, for Methotrexate is can also react negatively with other medications. The Coumadin side effects of hemorrhaging as well as harming an unborn baby can be magnified with Methotrexate, so the drug should only be taken with a doctor’s permission, and dosages, schedules and advise for birth control observed faithfully to prevent any complications resulting with a pregnancy.