Occasionally a young female may present with complaints that are caused by an unexpected pregnancy.


Factors that may contribute to a failure to recognize a pregnancy:

(1) very young age

(2) denial of pregnancy (see Chapter 15)

(3) ignorance or limited understanding about sex and reproduction

(4) concurrent condition that may mask symptoms

(5) poor parental supervision

(6) drug or alcohol misuse

(7) failure of contraception


A postpubertal female who is pregnant may present with:

(1) abdominal distention

(2) abdominal or pelvic pain or discomfort

(3) nausea and/or vomiting

(4) amenorrhea or menstruation-like bleeding

(5) weight gain

(6) mammary tenderness


Any female of reproductive age should be screened for pregnancy if they present with any of these findings.


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