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Many difficulties can arise with a pregnancy even after the sperm successfully fertilizes the oocyte. A major problem occurs if the fertilized egg tries to implant before reaching its normal implantation site, the uterus. An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg implants anywhere other than in the uterus, most commonly in the fallopian tubes. Ectopic pregnancies cannot continue to term, so a physician must remove the developing embryo as early as possible. Although no longer a significant risk to the mother's life due to improved detection methods as well as treatment procedures following detection, ectopic pregnancies can still pose a major risk to the mother's health if not detected early. If the fallopian tube ruptures as a result of an ectopic pregnancy, the physician can either try to repair the fallopian tube or remove the damaged portion. Various risk factors predisposing women to a higher chance of ectopic pregnancy include fallopian tube scarring, damaged fallopian tubes due to past ectopic pregnancies, or an inflamed fallopian tube.