What is a tubal assessment?
A tubal assessment is test used to diagnose tubal factor infertility. Tubal factor infertility occurs when obstructions, diseases, damage, or scarring in the fallopian tubes prevent sperm from reaching the ovary to fertilize an egg. It can also prevent a fertilized embryo from reaching the uterus for pregnancy. With a tubal assessment, we can determine if tubal factor infertility is preventing you from becoming pregnant.
What are the causes of tubal factor infertility?
Tubal factor infertility is most commonly caused by:
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), chlamydia and gonorrhea being the most common STDs
- Endometriosis, a disease in which the tissue that lines the uterus grows outside of the uterus
- Pelvic inflammatory diseases, which are infections of the female reproductive organs
- Ectopic pregnancy, a condition in which the embryo grows outside of the uterus
If you have had a ruptured appendix or previous abdominal surgeries, you may have a high risk of tubal factor infertility.
How is tubal factor infertility assessed?
In order to confirm whether one or both of your fallopian tubes is blocked, your doctor may perform one of two procedures: hysterosalpingogram (HSG) and laparoscopy. HSG is an X-ray examination and laparoscopy is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure. During a hysterosalpingogram, a speculum is used to open the vagina and a catheter is inserted to inject liquid through the cervix into the uterus. If liquid comes out the ends of one or both of your tubes, then it can be determined if one or both are open. If the liquid does not flow completely through one or both tubes, then the affected tube is considered blocked. This is only a test to determine if your fallopian tubes are open; it does not test if tubal function is normal.
During laparoscopy, a surgical instrument called a laparoscope is inserted through a very small incision below the belly button. Looking through the laparoscope, your surgeon will be able to see if one or both tubes are open. This procedure can also help to identify other issues that might be causing infertility, such as endometriosis or scar tissue.
Request fertility treatments in the San Fernando Valley
At Premier Women’s Health Associates, we help patients who are having trouble getting pregnant. If you would like to know that status of your fertility, schedule an appointment in West Hills, California. Once we identify the cause of infertility, we will provide the necessary treatment(s). To get started, request an appointment online or give us a call at (818) 346-5000.