To know fallopian tube blockage, it is necessary to understand what fallopian tube is, and its importance. First of all, fallopian tubes are part of female reproductive organ. There are two fallopian tubes, each located on either side of the body of uterus. Each fallopian tube is 10 cm long, its one end is attached to the ovary and the other end is attached to the body of uterus.
Mature egg released from the ovary passes through the fallopian tube before it reaches its final destination in the uterus. The egg and sperm meet in the fallopian tube. Fertilization of egg occurs in the fallopian tube after which the embryo slowly passes down the uterus and latches on the uterine wall. Fallopian tube blockage prevents meeting of sperm and the egg. It also prevents the egg from traveling down the uterus.
What Causes Blockage Of Fallopian Tubes?
Fallopian tube blockage is the most common cause for female infertility. Almost 40% of infertile women have blocked fallopian tube. Blockage can occur in one tube or in both the tubes, depending on the underlying cause.
Tubal damage is caused due to pelvic infection; it is also called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID). Often it is difficult to detect the exact reason for PID. However, some of the attributing causes for development of PID are pinpointed as:
- Gonorrhea and Chlamydia, both are sexually transmitted disease (STD).
- Infection after insertion of IUD (intra uterine devise), infection resulting after childbirth, miscarriage etc.
- Adhesions and scars in pelvis resulting after pelvic operation.
- Tuberculosis affecting fallopian tube. It is more common among people living in developing countries.
- History of previous ectopic pregnancy, a ruptured appendix.
Fallopian Tube Blockage Symptoms
Fallopian tube blockage symptoms in most cases remain silent, meaning there are no obvious symptoms noted. Female infertility may be indicative of tubal blockage. When one tube is occluded and other is patent (open), chances of infertility is less. But when both the tubes are blocked completely, it is difficult for the woman to conceive.
Mild nagging pain in lower abdomen may be felt by many women who have blocked tubes. This is due to the adhesions and scars in the pelvic area which causes pressure on the fallopian tube.
Sometimes there may be severe pain in the lower abdomen, especially during menstrual period. Since severe pain is not all that common for a blocked tube, other causes such as menstrual cramps, gastrointestinal problems and pelvic infection should be first thought of.
Blocked Fallopian Tubes Treatment
Most cases of fallopian tube blockage remain undetected as there are no major symptoms; it is only when a doctor advises certain tests to know the reason for infertility that a woman may come to know about her tubal blockage. Blocked tubes are usually diagnosed by specialized tests such as hysterosalpingogram (an X-ray Test). In this test a dye in introduced through the cervix. It passes through the uterus, fallopian tube and ovaries into the pelvic cavity. The dye is visualized through the X-ray. If the dye does not reach the ovaries it means there is an occlusion in the fallopian tube.
Fallopian tube blockage treatment is mainly aimed at increasing the chances of pregnancy, if that is the reason for infertility. If one tube is patent and another tube is blocked, the doctor may just give fertility drugs to initiate ovulation through the open tune.
Various other surgical procedures may be adopted by the surgeon when both the tube is blocked. However, surgical options have its own constraints, and the likelihood of its success depends on the severity of the tubal damage.
There is no definite certainty, but herbalists believe there are remedies that can help to correct the blockage of tubes. Certain type of massage on the lower abdomen helps to loosen the adhesions and improve the blood flow. Stress management by way of meditation and yoga may help to release the spasm of fallopian tube.