Tubal Reversal Procedure

Dr. Kaufmann is a surgeon who specializes in microsurgical techniques such as the tubal reversal procedure.

The tubal reversal procedure for the most part is done using an open technique. This means making a 2-3 inch incision in the abdomen in a bikini-like fashion. The abdomen is opened and using a microscope the ends of the tubes are reconnected (tube-to-tube reanastomosis). The tubal reversal procedure normally takes 2 hours.

After the procedure, you will spend a couple of hours in the recovery room and will be sent home that day. In some less common cases, you may decide to spend the night in the hospital. As the surgical procedure is not covered by your health plan, the decision to spend the night in the surgical facility will be an added expense.

Success rates for this procedure are partially dependent on the technique that was originally used to occlude your tubes and your age. Age has a significant effect on fertility.

The chance of becoming pregnant after a successful tubal reversal in a woman under age 35 is 60-80% over a two-year period. Before having a tubal reversal, it is always important to do a semen analysis, as the sperm quality can seriously affect fertility as well. Other appropriate tests may include ovulation tests and tests for ovarian reserve.

During your first visit with us, we will review the operative notes and pathology report from your tubal ligation. We will use these to assist us in determining the length of tube that was removed.

Pregnancy after a Tubal Reversal Procedure

We ask patients to take a pregnancy test as soon as they have missed a period, and inform us of all positive pregnancy tests. The main risk associated with tubal ligation reversal is ectopic pregnancy, which occurs in 10% of pregnancies after tubal surgery.

Detected early, an ectopic or tubal pregnancy can be treated medically to avoid damage to the fallopian tube and the need for additional surgery. When a woman has a positive pregnancy test, we repeat blood serum HCG tests twice a week and perform a vaginal ultrasound when the HCG level reaches 1500 to look for the pregnancy sac.

Success of the Tubal Reversal Procedure

The success of tubal ligation reversal depends primarily on the length of the fallopian tubes after repair, patient age, and method that was used for the ligation. There must be three to four centimeters of fallopian tube for pregnancy to occur. Prior to reversal, it is helpful for the patient to supply us with a copy of the surgical note from the initial tubal ligation procedure. If portions of the tubes were actually removed, a pathology report is also helpful.

If the patient had no problems becoming pregnant prior to tubal ligation, and the reversal is successful, the patient should be able to conceive. At your consultation we will attempt to give you a better idea of what to expect regarding your chances of conception after your reversal.