Learn more about tubal reversal from our fertility experts
Many women choose to have a tubal ligation as a permanent form of birth control, but life circumstances can change. As a result, some women later regret their decision to have a tubal ligation. Thankfully, options like tubal reversal and in vitro fertilization (IVF) exist. Our Austin fertility surgeons know that patients may be curious about the reversal procedure. However, we no longer perform this procedure because IVF tends to be a better option for most patients.
There are two surgical methods to perform the tubal reversal
Reversing a tubal ligation requires surgery, which comes with some risk and involves recovery time.
A mini-laparotomy involves making a small incision (about three inches) in a location that’s like a Cesarean section. A surgeon identifies the fallopian tubes and removes the ligated ends of the tubes. Once the tubes are open, the surgeon can connect them using very fine sutures.
Robotic-assisted laparoscopy is another method of tubal reversal. The da Vinci surgical system uses a computerized robot to assist the surgeon in removing the ligated ends of the fallopian tubes and sewing the open ends together.
Both of these surgical methods have similar success rates, but not every patient will be able to naturally conceive and welcome a baby after having one of these procedures. As a result, it’s not uncommon for a patient to still need IVF after having reversal surgery.
There are risks associated with this surgery
Reversal surgery comes with the same risks as any surgical procedure, including scarring, bleeding and infection. Additionally, the risk of an ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy in the fallopian tube) is higher after reversal surgery. An ectopic pregnancy will need to be treated with surgery or medication, and it may cause fallopian tube damage.
These are additional reasons why our Austin fertility surgeons tend to recommend IVF over tubal reversal. We invite you to contact us if you’d like to learn more about why we think IVF is a better option for most patients.