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How is tubal ligation done?

How is tubal ligation done?
How is tubal ligation done?

Tubal ligation is not a complicated surgery. It can be conducted any time you want to have it, including immediately after giving birth, with some women preferring to have it done during their cesarean section procedure.

There are various techniques for tubal ligation:

Laparoscopy tubal ligation

This technique involves inserting a long thin tube (laparoscope), that has a camera, into the abdomen through two tiny abdominal incisions. The abdomen is then pumped with gases to inflate it to create better visibility. The laparoscope allows the health-care provider to inspect the abdomen and pelvis and reach the fallopian tubes to block or cut them. The cut sections are then tied or clamped.

This procedure is typically done under general anesthesia, but local anesthesia and sedation can also be used. A laparoscopy is immediately effective in preventing pregnancy and has a shorter recovery time.

Laparotomy tubal ligation

In this technique, a small incision (2–3 cm) is made in the abdomen, and then the fallopian tubes are brought to the surface through the incision to be either cut or blocked. A larger incision may be made for obese individuals because the fallopian tubes are less accessible. A laparotomy procedure can be performed at any time and is commonly done on females who are at high risk if they undergo laparoscopic tubal ligation.

A laparotomy is the most major surgery, but it is also the least common (except for those having a cesarean delivery at the same time).

Mini-laparotomy (Minilap)

This technique is a less invasive form of laparotomy. A smaller incision is made on the abdomen and it is commonly done during or right after childbirth (postpartum).

If the procedure is done during a cesarean section surgery, the abdomen will already be open and the health-care provider will cut or block the fallopian tubes without any additional anesthesia. If it’s being done right after a vaginal birth, your epidural catheter can remain in place to provide the required sedation. But if the epidural catheter was removed or you didn’t have one, a spinal anesthetic will be administered before the procedure (5).

Hysteroscopic tubal ligation

This technique involves the introduction of medicine or coils into the fallopian tubes through the cervix. This either scars or blocks the tubes. The advantage of this procedure is that it is less invasive and can be performed in an office setting. It is recommended for people who are not good candidates for surgical procedures (6).

Where does the egg go after tubal ligation?

A tubal ligation does not stop the release of eggs by the ovaries (ovulation). It only prevents the egg from meeting sperm. The eggs released after a tubal ligation are broken down and safely reabsorbed by your body. You will also continue having your menstrual period until you reach menopause.

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