Tubal dysfunction or a blockage in the fallopian tubes is one of the most common causes of infertility. The blockage in one or both fallopian tubes can prevent the sperm from reaching the egg or the fertilized embryo from reaching the uterus. Thus, even if the couple has unprotected sex at the time of ovulation, it may not result in pregnancy. This is because the sperm must fertilize the egg in the fallopian tube for a successful pregnancy. Causes of tubal blocks include scarring, pelvic adhesions and infections.
Causes of Blockage in Fallopian Tube
A blockage in the fallopian tubes can be caused by many factors. This includes:
- Pelvic Inflammatory Disease - This disease is a common bacterial infection that affects the female reproductive organs. It usually begins in the vagina and may move on to other organs as well. If left untreated, it can be very dangerous and may even prove to be fatal.
- Endometriosis - Endometriosis refers to a condition where the tissue lining the inside of the uterus begins to grow outside the uterus as well. If this tissue builds up in the fallopian tubes, it could cause a blockage. Endometrial tissue on other organs in the pelvic cavity may cause adhesions that result in tubal dysfunction.
- STDs - Certain sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhoea and chlamydia can cause pelvic inflammatory disease. This, in turn, may result in scarring in the fallopian tubes and thus lead to tubal dysfunction.
- Past Ectopic Pregnancy - An ectopic pregnancy refers to a pregnancy where the egg was fertilized by the sperm in the fallopian tube and the resultant embryo was attached there itself, instead of moving to the uterus. This type of pregnancy cannot be allowed to continue to full term and must be terminated at the earliest. In most cases, women who have an ectopic pregnancy can go on to have healthy pregnancies in the future but in some cases, it may cause scarring that blocks the fallopian tubes.
- Fibroids - Fibroids are benign growths in the reproductive organs. In some cases when fibroids attach themselves to the uterus, they can block the fallopian tube.
- Past Abdominal Surgery - Any previous surgery in the pelvis area especially a surgery performed on the fallopian tubes may cause scarring that blocks the passage of the embryos to the uterus.
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