Does Stomach Pain After Sex Mean You’re Pregnant?

Woman Suffering from a Stomach Pain Lying Down on Couch

Sometimes, the reason why your stomach hurts after sex is because you strained your abdominal muscles. This is similar to why you might get cramps after a hard workout.

If you’re experiencing pain after orgasm along with spotting, this could be an early sign of pregnancy. Other early signs include breast tenderness, fatigue and missed periods.

Endometriosis

There are many myths and rumors around endometriosis and pregnancy, but the truth is that having endometriosis does not necessarily prevent you from becoming pregnant. However, it is important to see a doctor before trying to conceive and discuss your symptoms with them. They will do a pelvic exam and may order an ultrasound or MRI to assess the severity of your condition.

During a normal menstrual cycle, hormones are released which cause the lining of the womb to increase in preparation for a fertilized egg. If this lining is not fertilized, it will break down and bleed. However, this bleed cannot leave the body and instead is reabsorbed into the abdomen where it causes inflammation and pain.

This can lead to adhesions or fluid-filled ovarian cysts. Treatment can include hormonal medications (like gonadotrophin releasing hormone analogues) or surgery. These treatments will help to reduce your pain and menstrual periods, but they will not improve fertility.

It is important to tell your doctor about your endometriosis before you try to conceive, as having this condition during pregnancy increases your risk of complications like placenta previa. This is when the placenta attaches low in the womb, covering or partially covering the cervix (the entrance to the uterus). Having this condition also increases your risk of having a premature birth.

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Uterine Fibroids

Uterine fibroids are noncancerous tumors that develop in or on the uterus. They can cause heavy or lengthy periods, and bleeding between periods. They also can cause pain in the lower abdomen or pelvis. They can lead to iron-deficiency anemia, and can cause infertility or a greater chance of miscarriage. Fibroids are more common in women who are nearing menopause. They are made of smooth muscle cells and fibrous connective tissue.

They may not cause symptoms and do not affect a woman’s chances for pregnancy. Doctors often find them during a pelvic exam or on imaging tests such as ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), or a saline infusion sonogram. Fibroids can be treated with medicine such as ibuprofen, naproxen, or acetaminophen for pain. Hormonal birth control pills or a hormone injection can help with heavy periods and cramping, but cannot shrink or cure the fibroids. Surgery can be used to remove large fibroids, but it is usually not recommended during pregnancy.

The uterus (womb) is the pear-shaped organ where a baby grows and develops. It’s made up of the muscle wall, endometrium (lining), and cervix (opening). In women who are not pregnant, a lining is shed monthly as part of the menstrual cycle. The uterus is where the fetus implants during pregnancy. Fibroids can impact a pregnant woman in several ways, including making it harder to become pregnant, and increasing the risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery.

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Implantation

Before a fertilized egg can become a baby, it has to implant itself into the uterine wall (also known as endometrium). This triggers rising levels of pregnancy hormones like estrogen, progesterone and human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG. If the embryo doesn’t implant, a woman will experience her monthly period (which is often disappointing if she’s trying to get pregnant).

Light bleeding, or spotting, that occurs right after implantation is another possible sign of early pregnancy. This spotting can happen anywhere from a few days to a week before the time of your next expected period, and it’s usually lighter than typical menstrual bleeding.

Some women also experience implantation cramps, which are very similar to the cramps you might feel right before your period. These cramps can last for a few days and may feel like a prickly or tingling sensation in your lower abdomen.

Some women don’t experience any implantation symptoms at all, which is no surprise because this is such a delicate stage in the pregnancy process. Ultimately, the best way to know if you’re pregnant is to take a home pregnancy test when you think your period might be due. It’s best to wait until after the first day of your missed period to take the test for an accurate result. And if you’re still not sure, it’s always good to talk to your healthcare provider to be safe.

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Fertilization

Generally, fertilization takes place in the fallopian tube that connects your ovaries to your uterus. During each menstrual cycle, the ovary releases an egg for fertilization. Tiny finger-like structures on the egg, called fimbriae, help guide it down one of your fallopian tubes towards your uterus. During this journey, the egg can be fertilized by sperm. Most people think pregnancy begins with fertilization in the uterus, but this isn’t true. According to scientific research and long-standing federal policy, a woman is considered pregnant only when the fertilized egg implants in the wall of her uterus.

After a man ejaculates, millions of sperm swim to the upper vagina, where they must survive an acidic environment and pass through a narrow opening in the cervix. During this process, they may be destroyed by thick cervical mucus or phagocytic uterine leukocytes. The surviving sperm that manage to reach the ovulation site compete with thousands of other sperm for an egg. If the sperm successfully meet the egg, they form a single-celled zygote, which then burrows into the uterus lining. This is known as implantation.

In in vitro fertilization (IVF), a doctor works to mix a woman’s egg with donated sperm in a laboratory. The sperm is usually injected into the egg directly with a needle, a process called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). After a maximum of 6 days, the doctor transfers a fertilized egg to the uterus, where it can implant and develop into a fetus.