Video: Delivering lifesaving care – Dr. Tracy Thompson shares her emergency patient birth story

In hospitals across the country, OBHG clinicians deliver lifesaving care every single day. Their around-the-clock presence ensures that all obstetrical patients receive immediate, unbiased care.

Today’s story focuses on OB hospitalist Dr. Tracy Thompson and how she delivered lifesaving care to a patient.


OBHG Hospitalist Dr. Tracy Thompson was on duty when a patient arrived at the emergency room by ambulance. The patient had experienced severe abdominal pain the day before, which led to her syncopal episode at home.

She was in shock and very sweaty, with very low blood pressure and a rapid pulse. The emergency room physician quickly identified that she probably had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy based on her known positive HCG, or positive pregnancy tests at home and got some basic labs and including a hormone test for her pregnancy level. The ER doctor then called Dr. Thompson.

Dr. Thompson went down immediately to see the patient and she was found to have fluid in her abdomen based on a bedside ultrasound. Based on her report of a positive pregnancy test, Dr. Thompson went ahead and called the OR supervisor to open up the OR for her.

They had to call some staff in because they didn’t have anyone readily available, but they got on that right away. The IV fluid resuscitation did a good job of bringing down her pulse, although she remained with a low blood pressure. Dr. Thompson called for some emergency release blood based on the amount of fluid she saw on her abdomen, which was presumed to be blood on ultrasound. And as soon as the operating room was ready, they moved to the operating room.

Watch the video to hear Dr. Thompson’s story of life saving care.

This story serves as a poignant reminder of the vital role that OB hospitalists play in ensuring the health and safety of expectant mothers and their babies.

What is an ectopic pregnancy?

An ectopic pregnancy cannot be carried to term because the fertilized egg grows outside the uterus. With an ectopic pregnancy, the fertilized egg can’t survive. And it can cause life-threatening bleeding without treatment.

The most common type of ectopic pregnancy involves one of the fallopian tubes, which eggs pass through on the way to the uterus. Hormones or how the egg develops may play roles too.

Light bleeding from the vagina and pain in the pelvis are often the first symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy. Shoulder pain can occur if blood leaks from the fallopian tube. Get medical help right away for symptoms such as serious belly or pelvic pain with vaginal bleeding, extreme dizziness or fainting, or shoulder pain.

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