Tubal ligation is one of the permanent forms of birth control. Several women who do not want to have children in future have their fallopian tubes tied up after childbirth or otherwise. But they might change the decision later, under some different circumstances. But is all hope lost? Can a woman who has undergone tuba ligation never conceive again? Fortunately, she can, as tubal ligation reversal is possible. Yet, the process is not an easy one.
A woman who wants to conceive after tubal ligation has two options, a reversal surgery and IVF. The IVF treatment totally bypasses the role of fallopian tubes in the reproductive process. On the other hand, tubal reversal gives a woman a second chance at natural conception. Those who want to try and conceive naturally should definitely opt for tubal reversal as it offers a considerably good success rate. Let u know more about the procedure.
Understanding Tubal Reversal
As the name suggests, tubal reversal undoes the effect of a ligation surgery. It involves opening up and reconnecting of the fallopian tubes so that the woman can conceive again. The surgery takes 2-3 hours and is done as an outpatient procedure. It is done under general anesthesia, with the doctor viewing the fallopian tubes using laparoscopy. A small cut is the made near the pubic hair line and microscopic instruments are used to remove the clips/rings blocking the tubes. The tubes are then reconnected using small stitches.
Tubal reversal can also be carried out as an open abdominal surgery instead of laparoscopy. A major abdominal surgery has a longer recovery time as compared to a laparoscopic procedure. It also requires longer hospitalization. For this reason, more and more infertility specialists are switching over to the advanced laparoscopic technique these days. The patient just needs to take painkillers for a few days and resume her normal routine within two weeks.
There are certain risks associated with tubal reversal surgery. These include the common ones related to surgical procedures, such as infection, bleeding and damage to internal organs. Additionally, it puts a woman at high risk of ectopic pregnancy, where the embryo implants itself in the fallopian tube instead of the uterus.
Possibility of Pregnancy after Tubal Reversal
A woman who wants to opt for tubal reversal needs to visit an experienced infertility specialist. The specialist will first consider several factors to decide whether she is eligible for the surgery or not. He will evaluate her on the basis of several parameters to assess her chances of successful conception post-surgery:
Maternal Age: The chances of conception, natural or assisted, for a woman decline with her age. A woman on the wrong side of forties is not regarded as a good candidate for this surgery because her age would not be on her side. The infertility specialist would discuss the other options with her.
Egg Quality and Quantity: Another factor that influences the suitability of a patient for tubal reversal is the quality and quantity of her eggs. A diagnostic test for her ovarian reserve gives a fair idea about these parameters. A woman with declining ovarian reserve should rather adopt the shortcut method of IVF than try naturally after tubal reversal.
Status of Fallopian Tubes
The remaining length of the fallopian tubes after the ligation surgery says a lot about their capability to regain their function. The chances of pregnancy after reversal are better for women with longer fallopian tubes. The tubes need to be in a good condition too as presence of scar tissue can block them and hinder pregnancy. A hysterosalpingogram test is conducted to evaluate the status of fallopian tubes.
Overall Health of Reproductive Organs
The overall health of other reproductive organs such as ovaries and uterus also has a bearing on the success of tubal reversal. Pelvic endometriosis can pose risk to natural conception, though IVF ha better probability of yielding success. Whether or not the woman has had a baby before is another factor taken into account.
The specialist will also consider the quality of male sperms before opting suggesting tubal reversal for his partner. Good quality sperms ensure high chances of success with natural conception attempt after reversal. On the other hand, ICSI is seen as the best treatment option for couples with male factor infertility.
Once the infertility specialist checks all these parameters and finds them right, he will recommend a reversal surgery for the patient. Generally speaking, tubal reversal is feasible for those women who have had small part of tubes removed. A thorough physical examination of both the partners is done before moving ahead with tubal reversal. Furthermore, certain blood tests, ultrasound scans, and specialized tests for both the partners can be done for comprehensive diagnosis.
The chances of success of conception after tubal reversal are considerably good if the tubes are healthy. The success rate may vary between 40-85%, though it may vary from patient to patient. It is dependent upon other factors such as maternal age, male fertility status and general and reproductive health. Pregnancy is most likely to take place within the first year after the tubal reversal, if all other factors are positive. If the attempts to natural conception still fail, the woman should consider the alternative of IVF treatment.
Gaudium IVF is a trusted IVF clinic in Delhi where the patients are offered the best and the latest infertility treatment at affordable cost. For a free second opinion from Dr Manika Khanna, the award-winning infertility specialist in Delhi, visit Gaudium IVF today.