Statistics show that each year, about 700,000 tubal ligation procedures are done. About half of these happen post-partum; the rest are usually outpatient procedures.
There are many reasons a woman chooses tubal ligation. She may be done having children, or she may not want to have children at all. It’s a very effective form of birth control.
What happens, though, if you change your mind? Perhaps you have a new partner with whom you want to have children or your biological clock just kicks into gear.
Now you probably have two big questions. How effective is a tubal ligation reversal, and are you a good candidate to have one?
Keep reading to learn about the procedure for reversing tubal ligation and how to know if such a procedure would be successful for you.
What Is a Tubal Ligation Reversal?
Getting your tubes tied is a pretty straightforward procedure. Once the surgeon has access to the fallopian tubes, the tubes may be tied off, clamped, banded/ringed, cut/clipped, or sealed with an electric current. The chances of getting pregnant after this procedure are small.
Reversing tubal ligation is also a straightforward procedure. First, the surgeon will use a laparoscope (a narrow tube with a camera and a light) to determine if a reversal is possible.
If the surgeon concludes that a tubal reversal is a go, they will use microscopic instruments to reconnect the tubes. Depending on the surgical method chosen, this may or may not be an outpatient procedure.
Once the procedure is done, the success rate for pregnancy ranges anywhere from 50% to 80%. Many factors play into whether a reversal is a success or not.
- The amount of damage done to the tubes in the original tubal ligation
- The sperm count of your partner
- Scar tissue from any other pelvic surgery
- The method used to perform the original tubal ligation (clip/ring offers the best chance of pregnancy after reversal)
- Age (better chance of pregnancy under age 35)
The average tubal ligation reversal cost is $8,500. Insurance does not typically cover this procedure, but your doctor may offer a payment plan.
For even more information on the procedure and the cost, visit this blog on tubal ligation reversal.
Are You a Good Candidate?
Now that you know more about the reversal procedure, you want to know if you’re a good candidate. Just as with reversal success, there are many factors to take into consideration.
You should have regular monthly ovulation and periods, along with no other fertility issues. Your partner should have a good semen analysis for the procedure to be a success.
The less pelvic surgery you’ve had prior to the reversal, the better. This includes c-sections or an appendectomy. The amount of scar tissue in the area can affect the reversal procedure.
There should be about 6 cm of healthy tube remaining after the original procedure. Some damage is all right, but the surgeon will need some healthy tube to work with.
If you have had a salpingectomy (removal of the fallopian tubes) or an Essure or Adiana procedure to block the fallopian tubes, a reversal will not be possible. You will need to consider IVF as a method for getting pregnant.
Making the Best Decision
The original question was “Can tubal ligation be reversed?” You can see that, depending on your circumstances, it may well be possible to reverse the tubal ligation you had so you can try to become pregnant. If you’re looking to reverse your tubal ligation, start the process by talking to your doctor about your options.
If you found this article helpful, check out our site’s other articles related to keeping you and your family happy and healthy.