In the past you may have been certain you did not want to become pregnant, leading you to have your tubes tied. But what if you changed your mind? Tubal reversal surgery may be able to restore your ability to have a baby.
In some cases, a tubal ligation reversal may allow you to become pregnant through intercourse and without further medical intervention, as long as no other fertility factors are at play. However, this surgery is not successful for everyone. Your Inovi Fertility Specialist will help you determine if it is right for you by considering the following:
- The type of tubal ligation you had
- The amount of damage to your fallopian tubes
- Remaining tubal length
- Your age and body mass index
- Presence of other fertility issues (both male and female)
It is important to note that some types of sterilization, such as the Essure or Adiana systems, aren’t considered reversible.
What is a Tubal Reversal?
A tubal ligation reversal is a procedure where your fallopian tubes that were previously cut or clipped are reconnected in order to allow eggs from your ovaries to move freely and also to allow sperm to travel through them to fertilize an egg.
This procedure is a laparoscopic surgery that requires general anesthesia. Your doctor will first make a small slit in your naval and insert a camera to check that everything looks healthy and that enough of your fallopian tubes are left to reconnect. If it all looks good, a couple more small incisions will be made to insert the tools needed to complete the procedure.
How successful are Tubal Reversals?
While many factors contribute to the success of tubal reversals, about 50-80% of women who have the surgery go on to become pregnant. The most important factors for success include:
- Age – Women under 40 have a much greater chance of success.
- Type of tubal ligation – Reversal procedures are more successful if your tubal ligation was performed with rings or clips rather than if segments of your fallopian tubes were burned to close them off.
- Amount of fallopian tubes remaining – The more the better!
Depending on your unique situation, in vitro fertilization (IVF) may be a better option than tubal reversal to help you achieve pregnancy, especially if you are over the age of 40 or have other fertility issues. Your doctor will talk you through each option to help you make the choice that is right for your family.
What are the risks of Tubal Reversal?
As with all surgeries, some risks exist with a tubal ligation reversal. These include:
- Injury to other organs
- Anesthesia complications
- Ectopic pregnancy
- Continued infertility
Tubal Reversal Recovery
Tubal reversal is considered major abdominal surgery, so you should expect your recovery to take longer than after your original tube-tying procedure. You will be able to slowly return to your normal activities after a week or two when you begin to feel better. Stitches placed during surgery should dissolve on their own.
What if I am unable to become pregnant after tubal reversal?
In the event that your tubal reversal does not allow you to achieve pregnancy naturally, assisted reproductive technology (ART) may help you become pregnant. Intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF) may allow you to conceive the child you hope will become part of your family.
Is tubal reversal right for me?
Each patient has a unique fertility situation, so it is important to talk with your doctor about whether or not tubal reversal is the best method for you to achieve pregnancy. Call us today at 713-401-9000 to schedule your consultation with Dr. Stephan Krotz.