Permanent birth control procedures eliminate the possibility of pregnancy indefinitely. Two main types of permanent birth control are available for women: tubal ligation and fallopian tube occlusion (Essure).
During tubal ligation, Dr. Mayer closes the fallopian tubes surgically, thus preventing conception. He typically performs this surgery laparoscopically while the patient is under general anesthesia. Tubal ligation is effective immediately.
During fallopian tube occlusion, Dr. Mayer places a soft, small, flexible inserts in each fallopian tube. The body encircles the insert with scar tissue over a period of 3 months, which forms a natural barrier. Once this barrier is in place, sperm will be blocked from entering the fallopian tubes and unable to reach the eggs.
Unlike tubal ligation, fallopian tube occlusion doesn’t require general anesthesia or hospitalization. However, patients must use backup contraception until Dr. Mayer has confirmed that scar tissue is blocking the fallopian tubes completely.
Tubal ligation carries all the risks of any other surgery that requires general anesthesia. In rare cases, this surgery may also result in damage to nearby organs, infection, and pelvic pain. Some of the risks of fallopian tube occlusion include a failure of tubal blockage, infection, pelvic pain, and migration of the device outside of the fallopian tube.
Pregnancy following permanent birth control procedures is rare. However, if pregnancy does occur, it’s more likely to be ectopic.
In some cases, Dr. Mayer may be able to reverse a permanent birth control procedure. However, these reversals aren’t always successful. In some cases, permanent birth control may even interfere with in-vitro fertilization. For this reason, it’s important for women to be sure they don’t want any more children before having this procedure.
For women who aren’t sure whether they want to have more children, other long-term birth control options are available. For example, intrauterine devices can prevent pregnancy for several years without eliminating the patient’s fertility entirely. Patients should discuss their options with their partner and with Dr. Mayer before making a final decision.
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