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What is Tubal Ligation?

There are many methods of contraception; each working towards preventing the egg and sperm from meeting and fertilizing to form a baby. Tubal ligation is a permanent birth control method that involves the surgical blocking of the fallopian tubes, the region of fertilization.

The procedure can be performed immediately after childbirth or during an individual procedure. Your doctor makes an incision below your navel if tubal ligation is combined with vaginal delivery or uses the same incision made for a C-section delivery to approach the fallopian tubes. When performed individually, tubal ligation is performed laparoscopically, where 2 to 3 small incisions are made on the abdomen to insert a laparoscope, a narrow tube attached with a camera and light source, which provides your surgeon a clear image of the operating site. Other surgical instruments are then inserted to destroy or block the fallopian tubes with plastic clips or rings. The incisions are then closed.

Tubal ligation does not interfere with the normal menstrual cycle and can be reversed if you decide to get pregnant again. However, this involves a complex process, where minute sutures are used to stitch back the previously cut tubes.

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists American College of Surgeons American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology