Birth Control Permanent Methods
What are Permanent Methods of Birth Control?
Female Sterilization, Tubal Ligation
About 700,000 American women each year elect to have surgery for sterilization, referred to as tying the Fallopian tubes or tubal ligation. Some women have a hysterectomy (removal of the uterus and sometimes also the tubes and ovaries) each year but, but this is usually not performed only for birth control.
Most US women who have undergone sterilization experience either a postpartum minilaparotomy procedure or an interval (timing of the procedure does not coincide with a recent pregnancy) procedure. A postpartum tubal ligation is usually performed through a small incision made through the navel immediately following vaginal delivery of an infant, or it may be performed through an open incision at the time of cesarean section. An interval tubal sterilization is usually done with the use of small instruments inserted into a woman's abdomen following laparoscopy wherein the a scope is inserted through the umbilicus. Interval minilaparotomy - a small abdominal incision in bikini area - is usually the procedure of choice when distortion of the abdominal contents or adhesions are anticipated, which might compromise the ability to complete the procedure laparoscopically.The majority of cases of surgical sterilization for women are performed under general anesthesia.
The Fallopian tubes (through which the egg passes from the ovaries and where the egg is fertilized by the sperm) may be blocked with silastic rings, clips, bands, segmental destruction with electrocoagulation, or suture ligation with partial salpingectomy (removal of a segment in each of the fallopian tubes). Female sterilization prevents fertilization by interrupting the passage of sperm upward through the Fallopian tube.
Regret is difficult to measure because it encompasses a complex spectrum of feelings that can change over time. This helps to explain that while some studies have shown "regret" on the part of 26% of women, fewer than 20% seek reversal and fewer than 10% actually undergo the reversal procedure.
Female sterilization does not protect a woman from sexually transmitted diseases, and it involves all of the risks of surgery. Occasionally, sterilization cannot be done laparoscopically, and an abdominal incision may be necessary to reach the Fallopian tubes. There may be some short-term discomfort.
Omnia M Samra, MD
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