Tubal ligation is one of the most commonly used surgical sterilization options for women. It may be a good choice if you know for sure that you’re finished having children, aren’t interested in having any, or have health risks associated with pregnancy.
Because the procedure is difficult or sometimes impossible to reverse, it’s important to discuss the benefits and risks with a professional.
About the Procedure
During a tubal ligation, the fallopian tubes are cut, tied or permanently blocked. It works by preventing an egg from traveling from the ovaries through the fallopian tubes and by blocking sperm from travelling up to the fallopian tubes to the egg.
Most women choose to have the procedure after their baby’s birth. It can be done immediately after a cesarean (C-Section) via the same incision that was used to deliver the baby. As an outpatient procedure or after a vaginal delivery, a laparoscope is used through a small incision in the abdomen, under the belly button.
Having a tubal ligation immediately following childbirth does not usually impact your hospital stay. You may have some discomfort at the incision site. Your doctor will discuss post-procedure pain management before you leave the hospital or office.
Is Tubal Ligation Right for Me?
Getting your tubes tied is one of the most popular forms of permanent birth control, but also a very personal choice that requires serious consideration. Factors to consider include:
- Permanent: Though there are forms of long-lasting birth control, such as implants and intrauterine devices (IUD), tubal ligation is the only permanent option.
- Highly effective: Outside of abstinence, tube ligation is one of the most effective birth control options available. Fewer than 1% of women become pregnant in the first year after the procedure. The older you are at the time of the procedure, the more successful it will be.
- Does not affect hormones: Unlike birth control methods like the pill, the procedure doesn’t change your levels of estrogen and progesterone. You will still get your period, and it won’t impact your mood or sex drive.
- Helps guard against certain conditions: Protects women who may have serious health risks with conception, and may also decrease the risk of ovarian cancer, especially if the fallopian tubes are removed.
- Does not guard against STDs: While tubal ligation removes the need for birth control, it does not protect against sexually transmitted diseases or infections.
- Some risks: While the procedure is generally very safe with rare complications, it’s still surgery. Also, there’s a higher risk for ectopic pregnancy, which occurs when the fertilized egg is implanted outside of the uterus usually attaching to the fallopian tube. It requires immediate medical attention.
- Difficult to reverse: Although tubal ligation is technically reversible, the procedure is complicated and results are not guaranteed. Some success has been possible through IVF (in-vitro fertilization) but it is very expensive and complex.
Before deciding on tubal ligation, it is important to carefully consider your future and the future of your family. Your healthcare can provide all the information and support you need to make the best decision for your life. There are also many semi-permanent birth-control options available you can explore together.
Related Services and Conditions
More than 200,000 new cases of breast cancer are discovered in the U.S. each year. At Forrest City Medical Center, we know the value of early detection and mammography is a tool we use to identify potential issues. An x-ray of the breast, mammography is used to look...
Forrest City Medical Center uses ultrasound as a painless, non-invasive way to diagnose a variety of diseases and conditions without the use of radiation, making this a widely used procedure during pregnancy. Sometimes called sonography, ultrasounds bounce...
At Forrest City Medical Center, we are dedicated to providing preventative, diagnostic and clinical services that support the health and wellness of women of all ages.mobile iconCall 870-261-0151 Related Services and Conditions
The gynecologists at Forrest City offer annual well-woman exams, which include a routine Pap smear. Should the test show anything unusual, your doctor may recommend a colposcopy to get a closer look at the cervix. Colposcopy is a simple, virtually painless procedure,...
If you suffer with heavy, painful and prolonged periods, the women’s health team at Forrest City can help. The experts at Forrest City Medical Center specialize in endometrial ablation, an outpatient treatment that can significantly reduce or eliminate menstrual...
If you have heavy periods, then you should discuss with your doctor to find out if fibroids or polyps are the culprit. Hysteroscopy is a procedure that allows your doctor to look inside your uterus in order to diagnose and treat causes of abnormal bleeding. Forrest...
Lumpectomy is surgery to remove cancer or other abnormal tissue from your breast. During lumpectomy, a small amount of normal tissue around the lump also is taken to help ensure that all the cancer or other abnormal tissue is removed. Lumpectomy helps confirm a...
A mastectomy is a way to treat breast cancer by surgically removing a breast and sometimes nearby tissues. For those with early-stage breast cancer, a mastectomy may be one treatment option. Breast-conserving surgery (lumpectomy) in which only the tumor is removed...
Pelvic floor disorders, including pelvic organ prolapse, affects 1 in 3 women in their lifetime. It impacts a group of muscles that keep the bladder, uterus, vagina, small bowel and rectum in place. Though it’s very common, many women are embarrassed to speak with...
Do you have abnormal bleeding that is not controlled by other treatments, uterine prolapse, or cervical or uterine cancer? These might be reasons for a total hysterectomy. A total hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the uterus and cervix, ending menstruation and...