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Doctor's Perform Emergency C-Section, Make Unexpected Discovery

In the last year, at least three women in Brazil have woken up from their C-sections expecting to have a baby put in their arms, only to be told by doctors that they were never pregnant in the first place. The shocked women and their families are in disbelief, and some conspiracy theories about baby theft have begun to stir. According to doctors, however, phantom or false pregnancies do happen.

The condition is known as pseudocyesis, Dr. Manny Alvarez in a column penned for Fox News. Alvarez is chairman of the department of obstetrics/gynecology and reproductive science at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. He also is the senior managing health editor for Fox News Channel.

"Over the years, I’ve had patients with this condition, which is characterized by a woman’s belief that she is pregnant when she is not," writes Alvarez. "She feels all the symptoms of pregnancy – including nausea, vomiting, weight gain, fatigue, tender breasts and enlargement of the abdomen. However, all of these symptoms are driven by psychological factors and not a true pregnancy."

Doctors don't fully understand phantom pregnancies, or why they occur, but it is a known condition. Health care professionals suspect psychological issues stimulate hormonal activities that cause the body to mimic pregnancies. Women can be so convinced that they're expecting that they may become very alarmed when they're told they're not.

Surprisingly, women aren't the only ones who can suffer from phantom pregnancies. It can also affect men.

Source: Fox News
Photo: Medical News

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