UTERUS, TUBES & ADHESIONS

Fibroids and Infertility

Fibroids are benign (non-cancerous) tumors of the uterus. Around 25 percent of women in their childbearing years will have signs of fibroids that can be detected by a pelvic examination, although not all will experience symptoms. Types of fibroids as follows:

    • Submucous fibroid
      A fibroid which grows just under the uterine lining.
    • Intracavitary fibroid
      A fibroid which grows inside the uterine cavity.
    • Intramural fibroid
      A fibroid which grows in the muscular wall of the uterus.
    • Subserosal fibroid
      A fibroid which grows just mainly on the outer surface of the uterus.
    • Pedunculated fibroid
      A fibroid which is attached to the uterus by a thin “stalk”.
Hydrosalpinx

A hydrosalpinx is a blockage of the far end of a woman’s fallopian tube which results in the accumulation of fluid within the tube. This condition may affect one or both fallopian tubes, resulting in the area becoming substantially swollen and may cause a few centimeters growth in diameter.

Some women may experience from abdominal or pelvic pain as a result. Others may find out about hydrosalpinx as a result of infertility – due to the blocked tube, the egg cannot be captured by the fallopian tube and the egg and sperm are prevented from meeting. Thus fertilisation cannot occur and pregnancy is prevented .Women, who are not trying to get pregnant and experience no pain, may go undiagnosed.

Adhesions

Pelvic adhesions are also commonly referred to as scar tissue and may cause different organs in the abdomen or pelvis to become stuck together. This results in a distorted pelvic anatomy (making it more difficult for the egg to enter the fallopian tube at the time of ovulation) or may cause decreased mobility and function, which impacts fertility.

Common causes of adhesions include infections, previous surgery, abdominal trauma, endometriosis, and appendicitis. Some women were found to have adhesions even without a history of any of the above conditions. In such cases, adhesions might have resulted from a previous pelvic infection.

Chlamydia

Any sexually active person can be infected with chlamydia through vaginal, anal, or oral sex. The greater the number of sex partners, the greater the risk of infection. Though, chlamydia can also be passed from an infected mother to her baby during childbirth.

About 75% of infected women and about 50% of infected men have no symptoms of chlaymida infection. Women who do have symptoms may experience abnormal vaginal discharge, burning sensation when urinating, lower abdominal pain, low back pain, nausea, fever, pain during intercourse, or bleeding between menstrual periods. If left untreated, the infection may cause hydrosalpinx and adhesions, resulting infertility.

Thin uterine lining

In order for a pregnancy to occur, the embryo must implant into the uterine lining (the endometrium). Estrogen and progesterone produced from the ovaries thicken and prepare the uterine lining for implantation. Chances of a pregnancy is reduced when a woman has a persistently thin uterine lining despite receiving adequate amounts of estrogen.

Chronic inflammation

Inflammation is an increasingly recognised factor contributing to reproductive dysfunction. Several common causes of infertility such as pelvic inflammatory disease, PCOS, obesity, endometriosis, and recurring miscarriages.

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