Objectives: To lay down the criteria to clearly define whether conservative or radical laparoscopic treatment should be adopted in cases of ectopic pregnancies (EP).
Design: Retrospective, noncomparative.
Setting: At the University Hospital of Clermont Ferrand and the La Pergola Clinic at Vichy from July 1974 to December 1987.
Patients: This study was carried out in 223 patients who had been treated laparoscopically for EP and who desired future childbearing and who were not lost to follow-up.
Main outcome measures: The measures chosen to achieve the objective included age, parity, size of hematosalpinx, volume of hemoperitoneum, tubal rupture, location, intrauterine device, ipsilateral and contralateral adhesions, and patient's previous history of salpingitis, EP, solitary tube, and tubal infertility.
Results: The general intrauterine pregnancy rate was 67% (149 patients) and the recurrence rate 12% (27 patients). The results according to the studied factors demonstrated that age, parity, and the type of the EP have no influence on the postectopic fertility. The history of the patient, ipsilateral adhesions, or contralateral tubal status significantly reduce the future fertility prognosis and risk of recurrence.
Conclusions: From a multivariable analysis, the authors propose a scoring system to choose the most suitable treatment to preserve fertility and to reduce the risk of recurrence ranging from laparoscopic conservative treatment to laparoscopic salpingectomy with contralateral sterilization.