13 Sep Problems and solutions of fallopian tubes obstruction
For those who don’t know, the fallopian tubes are muscular tubes, located in the female reproductive system, which connect the ovaries to the womb. Hence, their function is to achieve fertilisation, allowing one or more oocytes to travel to the uterus and meet the sperm. For this reason, when there is a tubal obstruction, fertilisation and, therefore, pregnancy is made difficult. In this article we will tell you a little more about this problem that some women suffer from.
One of the most common causes of infertility in women is the obstruction or blockage of the fallopian tubes. This obstruction can be total or partial (only one tube being obstructed). In the latter case, fertilisation is hindered, although it does not make it impossible, as pregnancy can be achieved, but it may take much longer than normal or recurrent. Total blockage, on the other hand, makes fertilisation impossible.
30-40% of women with fertility problems have obstructed fallopian tubes, due to abnormalities in the anatomy or patency of the tube.
The tubes, apart from allowing the fertilisation of the egg and sperm, provide the embryo with adequate space to develop between the first three and five days of growth, when the first cell divisions take place. On the other hand, they have the role of transporting the embryo to the uterine cavity for implantation to take place.
There is no doubt that it is necessary for the tubes to have the appropriate flexibility and anatomy, and to offer the necessary mobility for fertilisation and gestation of the embryo.
Causes of fallopian tube obstruction
- Diseases such as endometriosis (growth of endometrial tissue outside the uterus).
- Sexually transmitted infections.
- Ectopic pregnancies or complicated miscarriages.
- Surgery in the abdominal area or pelvis, which has created scarring and can affect the structure of the tubes.
- Salpingitis: acute inflammation of the tubes, usually caused by micro-organisms or sexually transmitted diseases, such as Chlamydia.
- Hydrosalpinx: alteration of the tubes in the area of the fimbriae (formations located at the ends of the tubes), through the accumulation of fluid inside.
How is this obstruction detected?
Causes such as hydrosalpinx make the obstruction asymptomatic. It is therefore necessary to carry out a fertility study to find out the causes of infertility and detect tubal obstruction.
The study can be carried out by different methods:
- Hysterosalpingography (HSG). A test that can identify the patency of the tubes and whether there is any alteration in the structure of the uterus. This test consists of an X-ray with contrast carried out through the cervix via a catheter. Through this iodised liquid, it will be possible to see if there is any part of the uterus that cannot be entered.
Thanks to this method, a blocked tube can be diagnosed without the need for anaesthesia. It must be performed between the days of menstruation and ovulation.
- Hysterosonography (HSN). This test is an improved technique, as it does not use X-rays or contrast, only a serum that is introduced into the uterine cavity, which can be performed in a gynaecological surgery. A foaming gel can also be used, which greatly reduces the patient’s discomfort.
Which treatments should be carried out when there is a tubal obstruction?
Depending on the cause of the obstruction, different treatments are needed. That is to say, if it is due to an infection, the doctor will prescribe the appropriate medication for the patient. In other cases, through laparoscopic surgery, the tubes can be unblocked and repaired.
However, if this is not possible, the patient should seek the help of assisted reproduction specialists, such as Reproclinic, to perform IUI, Intrauterine Insemination, in the case of partial obstruction; or IVF, In Vitro Fertilisation, in the case of total obstruction.
Therefore, if you require the help of ART specialists, do not hesitate to contact us. In our first free consultation, your doctor specialised in assisted reproduction will evaluate your case and decide which technique is the most suitable for you and to achieve your dream of becoming a mother and having a healthy baby.
If you need more information, do not hesitate to contact us and ask for your first consultation with our specialists, we will do our best!