Twenty-nine out of every thirty cases of ectopic gestation present symptoms by which a presumptive, if not a reasonably certain, diagnosis may be made prior to the patient's arrival at a condition which is alarming.
There are instances in which the first complaint and the first symptoms are of such a nature as to excite the greatest alarm in the minds of physician and friends, because the patient is, without previous warning, brought at once to the verge of death, yet such cases are very exceptional.
To simplify the detection of ectopic gestation and to aid in an early diagnosis of the condition, I wish first to direct your attention to what I consider two distinct stages of the disease: the non-tragic stage and the tragic stage.
THE NON-TRAGIC STAGE.
Since most cases present a group of symptoms preceding the tragic stage of the disease sufficiently distinctive to warrant a
HARRIS PA. THE EARLY DIAGNOSIS OF TUBAL PREGNANCY.. JAMA. 1907;XLIX(13):1103-1110. doi:10.1001/jama.1907.25320130037001n