The fallopian tubes carry eggs from the ovaries to the uterus. When tubes are blocked by scar tissue from Endometriosis, surgery or infection, the egg and/or the sperm cannot travel through. If a fertilized egg is trapped in the fallopian tube, the result is an Ectopic pregnancy, which must be treated with medication or surgery.
Tubal problems include
Infections : Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Gonorrhea and Chlamydia, often go unnoticed and untreated, causing Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID). Serious infection can cause scar tissue and damage the CILIA ( the small hairs lining the tubes to help the eggs move through). Symptoms of sexually transmitted diseases include inflammation and abnormal discharge. PID can result in pelvic or abdominal pain. Severe, untreated infection has been linked to Cervical and other Cancers, Chronic Hep
atitis and Cirrhosis of the liver.
Hydrosalpinges : This condition is caused by a severe blockage resulting from infection. It greatly reduces the chance of pregnancy without IVF because it stretches or distorts the fallopian tubes to the extent that they cannot be opened and/or repaired. When the tubes fill with fluid, there is a chance that it can leak back into the uterus. Because this fluid is toxic to embryos placed into the uterus during IVF, physicians often remove or surgically block the tubes before a cycle to improve embryo implantation rates.
Endometriosis : Tissue lining the uterus (Endometrium) grows and thickens during a menstrual cycle to receive a fertilized egg (implantation). Without a pregnancy, the lining sheds and is discharged with blood during a menstrual period. Endometriosis occurs when this tissue grows outside the uterus and the shedding process deposits blood and tissue in the abdomen. As a result, scar tissue can form in the fallopian tubes, adhere to the ovaries and/or cause misalignment of the organs, preventing natural conception. Although some women have no discomfort even with severe endometriosis, others experience abnormal menstrual bleeding and pain, tenderness in the abdomen and pelvis, and/or painful intercourse.
Tubal Ligation: A form of birth control, this surgical procedure involves tying, clamping off or burning the ends of the fallopian tubes so pregnancy cannot occur.