Think you can’t get pregnant from anal sex? Think again. A bizarre story reported by Women’s Health has highlighted how a New Jersey doctor treated a pregnant woman who rushed into the emergency department complaining of spotting— from her rectum. Read on below.
Pregnancy 101. Before we get into the unusual medical case (and its insane details), let’s take a look at how a normal pregnancy usually happens. Typically, pregnancy works like this: a man and a woman have PIV sex. If semen gets in the vagina, the sperm cells are able to swim up through the cervix and uterus, and into the fallopian tubes.
Pregnancy 101. Once the sperm cells reach the fallopian tubes, they start to look for an egg. Then, the clock starts ticking: overall, sperm cells have up to six days to find an egg before they die.
Pregnancy 101. When — and if — a sperm cell finds an egg, it joins it— this is called fertilization. “If a sperm cell does join up with your egg, the fertilized egg moves down the fallopian tube toward the uterus,” according to Planned Parenthood. “It begins to divide into more and more cells, forming a ball as it grows. The ball of cells (called a blastocyst) gets to the uterus about 3–4 days after fertilization.”
Pregnancy 101. The ball of cells then floats in the uterus for two to three days. “If the ball of cells attaches to the lining of your uterus, it’s called implantation — when pregnancy officially begins,” Planned Parenthood reports. Simple enough, right?
The case. Brian Steixner, M.D., a urologist with the Jersey Urology Group in Atlantic City, recently opened up about his wild experience with an unusual pregnancy which, as you may have already guessed, did *not* happen the way we just outlined. So, exactly what went down? A lot of crazy sh*t, apparently.
Pregnancy woman. Steixner explained that one night while he was on the job, a young, pregnant woman walked into the emergency department complaining of spotting. While it’s no secret that expectant mothers tend to experience light spotting every now and then, this woman’s experience was unusual in that the blood was coming from her rectum. Yes, that’s right. Her. Rectum.
A cloacal malformation. As Women’s Health explains, the patient was born with a condition known as a cloacal malformation. “When she was born, she didn’t have a urethra, vagina, and anus,” Women’s Health reports. “She just had one hole, called a cloaca.”
A cloacal malformation. Safe to say, the condition is incredibly rare, with only one in 25,000 female live births being diagnosed with it. While no one knows what exactly causes it, it’s usually diagnosed at birth and thus, “fixed” right away. Though the woman had originally undergone a procedure to repair her bits, something ultimately went wrong later on.
A cloacal malformation. “Either the surgery was botched or in response to the trauma of surgery, her body formed a fistula (an abnormal connection between organs), and her uterus fused to her rectum,” Women’s Health explains. “So every month when Aunt Flo came to town, she had her period rectally.” No, that’s not a joke: the patient experienced blood dripping out of her butt on a regular basis.
Exclusively had anal. Steixner then began to speak to the patient. In their conversation, he found out that she only had anal sex prior to getting pregnant. So, it hit him: she got pregnant through anal. All together now: WTF?!
Mind-blowing. “It blew my mind,” Steixner told Women’s Health. Several months later, the patient underwent a C-section, as the doctors didn’t think she should try to sh*t out the baby. Like, literally.
C-Section. “The obgyns couldn’t figure out a way to effectively deliver the baby through the rectum safely,” Steixner explained to Men’s Health. “So she had a C-section.”
Healthy. Fortunately, the woman gave birth to a healthy child. However, Steixner says he doesn’t know what happened to his patient after she had the baby. “And while the case of a woman getting pregnant through anal sex due to a cloacal malformation is incredibly rare, being born with a cloaca can be incredibly difficult, even if it is repaired at birth,” Women’s Health notes.
Delicate work. “Building the walls to separate the three passages [the urethra, vagina, and rectum] is delicate work,” Steixner explained, Women’s Health reports. “The longer the walls need to be built, the closer surgeons get to the urethral and anal sphincters. Some women suffer from leakage of urine and stool their entire lives. It’s a huge psychological and quality of life issue.”
Relax. The story is totally crazy, right? That said, there’s no need to freak out: you’re probably never (read: most definitely never) going to conceive via anal sex. “This case is one in a billion and the rarest of the rare,” Steixner told The Independent “I’m not sure it should be a big issue for women generally.” Phew.