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Tubal Problems

What are fallopian tubes?

Fallopian tubes, also known as uterine tubes, are hollow tissue that connects each ovary to the uterus. The function of fallopian tubes is to transfer the ova from the ovaries to the uterus every month. If sperms are present in the uterus, they swim all the way to the tube towards the egg to fertilize it. Thus, the process of fertilization takes place in the fallopian tubes. Later, the fertilized egg (embryo) is transported back to the uterus through these tubes for implantation and growing for the next nine months.

Tubal Problems

Tubal problems start when the fallopian tubes are not functioning well. Due to some structural problems, the tubes prevent the sperm from reaching the egg for fertilization or preventing the embryo from reaching the uterus for pregnancy. It is called tubal factor infertility.
Infertility happens when one or both the fallopian tubes is blocked or damaged and do not allow sperm to fertilize the egg. It can happen when both the tubes are completely blocked, any one of the tubes is blocked, or some scarring has narrowed the tubes, preventing the movement of sperm and egg.
Sometimes, fertilization happens even in the blocked tubes, but the embryo is unable to travel to the uterus and, as a result, starts developing in the tubes. It is called an ectopic or tubal pregnancy, which gets fatal if not treated on time.

What causes tubal factor infertility?

  • Infections like Chlamydia and gonorrhea
  • Pelvic inflammatory diseases
  • Abdominal surgery
  • Endometriosis

These issues may cause scarring between the ovary and end of the fallopian tube, causing the delicate inner lining to be permanently wounded. Due to it, the tube next to the ovary may become completely or partially blocked.

Symptoms of tubal factor infertility

Most of the cases of tubal problems are asymptomatic. When a woman is unable to conceive, the doctor runs tests and ultrasound scans to check tubal problems. However, if the tubal damage is extensive, women may experience acute pelvic pain.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Tubal Problems

Diagnosis

- The doctor performs laparoscopy to check if the tubes are open or blocked. This procedure will also help detect other tubal problems that may affect fertility, like scar tissues or endometriosis.

Treatment

- If the tubes are found to be blocked, scarred or damaged, the two treatment options available include:

  • Surgery

    - Some microsurgical procedures are done to enhance the possibility of pregnancy.

  • In Vitro Fertilization (IVF)

    - Women with severely damaged fallopian tubes have poor chances of a successful surgery and natural pregnancy. Therefore, IVF offers the best option for them to get pregnant. In some cases, the doctor recommends removing completely damaged tubes before IVF, improving the chances of successful IVF.

Contact Pragati IVF Center to know more about tubal problems and their treatment.

Tubal Problems