False pregnancy or pseudocyesis is a condition that makes a woman believe that she is pregnant, but not. He even has many common symptoms of pregnancy. However, this is not caused by miscarriages. In fake pregnancy, the woman is not pregnant and there is never a baby. However, symptoms can last long enough to make a woman, and even people around her, believe that she is pregnant.
What causes the condition of false pregnancy?
Recently, doctors have begun to understand that psychological and physical problems are the root of pseudocyesis. Although the exact cause is unknown, doctors suspect that psychological factors might trick the body into "thinking" that pregnancy does occur.
When a woman feels a desire or even a strong fear of pregnancy, the woman's brain misinterprets the signal as pregnancy, and triggers the release of hormones, such as estrogen and prolactin, which can cause actual symptoms of pregnancy. Some researchers have stated that poverty, lack of education, sexual abuse, or relationship problems may play a role in triggering false pregnancy.
What are the symptoms of fake pregnancy?
Pseudocyesis often resembles a real pregnancy, in all respects, except for the presence of a baby. In all cases of pseudocyesis that occur, the woman is absolutely certain that she is pregnant. Physically, the most common symptom is a distended stomach, similar to being pregnant with a baby. The stomach can start to grow like a pregnancy when the baby starts to grow and develop. During fake pregnancy, this enlargement of the stomach is not caused by the presence of a baby, but is caused by a buildup:
Women's menstrual cycle irregularities are the second most common physical symptoms. About half of women who experience false pregnancy report a feeling of a baby moving. Many of them also said that there was also the feeling of babies kicking, even though in reality there were never babies there. Other symptoms that can occur in false pregnancy are similar to the actual symptoms of pregnancy, namely:
- Morning sickness and vomiting
- Breast pain
- Breast changes (including size and pigmentation)
- Lactation, breast milk out
- Weight gain
- Navel sticks out
- Appetite increases
- Uterine enlargement
- Softening of the cervix
This symptom closely resembles the condition of a woman who is truly pregnant, so doctors can sometimes be deceived.
Test to detect the condition of fake pregnancy
To determine whether a woman is experiencing false pregnancy, the doctor will usually evaluate the symptoms, namely by performing a pelvic exam and abdominal ultrasound. The same test is used to feel and see an unborn baby during a normal pregnancy
In the case of a fake pregnancy, no baby will be seen on an ultrasound, and there will be no heartbeat. Sometimes, doctors will indeed find some physical changes that occur during pregnancy, such as an enlarged uterus and a softened cervix. The pregnancy urine test will always be negative in this case, with the exception of the presence of rare cancers that produce hormones similar to pregnancy. Certain medical conditions that can mimic the symptoms of pregnancy are ectopic pregnancy, morbid obesity, and cancer. This condition may be seen by a test.
Is there a treatment for the condition of false pregnancy?
Actually, showing evidence that a woman really isn't pregnant, through imaging techniques such as ultrasound, is the most successful way to make this fake pregnancy end. Fake pregnancy is not considered a physical problem, but is psychological, so there is no general recommendation to deal with it with drugs. However, if a woman experiences symptoms such as irregular menstruation, the drug can be prescribed.
False pregnancy seems to occur in women who experience psychological instability. For this reason, they must be treated with a psychotherapist for treatment.
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