How to Get Pregnant if Your Tubes Are Tied

Posted by on Jul 27, 2015 in Diseases & Dysfunctions |

How to Get Pregnant if Your Tubes Are Tied

Tubal ligation, commonly referred to as “tying your tubes,” is intended as a permanent method of birth control, but in some cases the procedure can be reversed. The original procedure involves a surgical closure of the Fallopian Tubes, which serve as the passageway for eggs to travel from the ovaries to the uterus. Tying off these tubes prevents eggs from being reached by sperm and fertilized. Still, there are occasional cases of unintentional pregnancies happening to women who have had a tubal ligation. Sometimes the surgery site doesn’t heal properly, leaving an opening which eggs or sperm can still pass through, and other times the body manages to form its own new passageway, effectively reconnecting the two cut ends of the tube. Unintentional pregnancies after tubal ligation are rare, but in other cases, women find themselves wishing to reverse the procedure. In such a case, the main question is how to get pregnant if your tubes are tied.

It’s not uncommon for women who once thought for certain they were done with child-bearing to find later in life that they have reason to want more children. Life changes like a divorce and remarriage change the life-landscape, and a woman’s wishes along with it. Some types of tubal ligation can be surgically reversed, essentially re-opening the pathway that allows eggs to reach the uterus and be fertilized. If a fertility specialist determines that yours is a case where this procedure is likely to proceed without problems, a reversal procedure is the simplest approach to getting pregnant. Some of the factors which determine whether your reversal will be successful include the length of time since you had your tubes tied (the longer it has been, the more difficult it is to reverse), the type of procedure you had done (surgical cuts compared to laser burning), and of course the usual factors that affect a woman’s ability to conceive, such as age and health. Be prepared also for the fact that the reversal procedure is costly, and seldom covered by insurance.

There are some cases, however, which turn out to be irreversible, due to issues like scarring from the original tubal ligation procedure. The inability to reverse the procedure is more frequent with some variations of tubal ligation, such as surgical burning of the cut ends of the tubes.If this is true for you, it may be possible to undergo additional surgery to remove the scarring blockage and free up the Fallopian Tubes for the passage of eggs to be fertilized. If even this procedure is unsuccessful, there are still options that can allow you to bear children. In vitro fertilization is the most commonly recommended approach at this point. This process involves “harvesting” eggs from your ovaries, fertilizing them with your partner’s sperm in the fertility laboratory, and then implanting a fertilized embryo in your uterus. Most fertility specialists will recommend implanting several embryos, recognizing that only about one in four in vitro implantations are successful, and wanting to increase your chances of a successful pregnancy on the first try. Of course, this approach also presents the possibility of a multiple pregnancy if more than one of those embryos survives to grow into a baby.

In vitro fertilization is expensive, not always covered by insurance, and often takes several attempts. However, for a couple who keeps trying, it is almost always successful eventually, if not right away. If fertilization by “natural” methods proves impossible, and if your heart is set on bearing your own children, this method is your best bet.