Laparoscopic Sterilization

What is Laparoscopic Sterilization?

Laparascopic Ovarian Cystectomy at Women's Hospital International & Fertility Centre

During a laparoscopic surgical procedure, small incisions of up to half an inch are made and plastic tubes called ports are placed through these incisions. The camera and the instruments are then introduced through the ports, which allow access to the inside of the patient. The camera transmits an image of the organs inside the abdomen onto a television monitor. The surgeon is not able to see directly into the patient without the traditional large incision. The video camera becomes a surgeon’s eyes in laparoscopy surgery, since the surgeon uses the image from the video camera positioned inside the patient’s body to perform the procedure.

Sterilization by laparoscopy is a common procedure used to perform tubal ligation in women. Tubal ligation is a method of Sterilization that involves obstruction of the fallopian tubes. The fallopian tubes are on either side of the uterus and extend toward the ovaries. They receive eggs from the ovaries and transport them to the uterus. Once the fallopian tubes are closed by laparoscopic Sterilization, the man's sperm can no longer reach the egg.

Why is it done?

For women who no longer want children, Sterilization by laparoscopy provides a safe and convenient form of contraception. Once completed, no further steps are needed to prevent Pregnancy. Tubal ligation also does not change a woman's menstrual cycle or cause menopause.

However, laparoscopy may not be suitable for some women. In these cases, tubal ligation may be performed by laparotomy, a more extensive surgery that requires a larger abdominal incision and a day or two of recovery in the hospital.

What to expect after surgery?

Patients will probably be able to get back to normal activities within a week's time, including driving, walking up stairs, light lifting and work. Activity is dependent on how the patient feels. Walking is encouraged. Patients can remove the dressings and shower the day after the operation. In general, recovery should be progressive, once the patient is at home. Most patients are fully recovered and may go back to work after seven to ten days. Often, this depends on the nature of your job since patients who perform manual labor or heavy lifting may require two to four weeks of recovery.

What are the risks of the surgery?

The complication rate with laparoscopic Sterilization is approximately 0.02 per 1000 procedures.

  • Most common complication is perforation of the uterus (when an instrument creates a small tear through the uterine wall). This does not usually require treatment and does not have any long-term consequences.
  • Infection bowel or bladder injury
  • Internal bleeding
  • Problems related to anesthesia.

What are the alternatives to the surgery?

There are many effective contraception methods, such as the pill or condoms. These methods are usually easily reversible. Consider these methods carefully before sterilisation. Sterilisation reversal is difficult. It is only successful for about seven in 10 women (70%).

Your partner could consider male sterilisation, called a vasectomy. This is a simple operation, often carried out under local anaesthetic.

If you have scarring, called adhesions, in your abdomen from past operations or infection, a keyhole operation may not be safe. Consider other contraceptive methods before an open sterilisation operation with a larger wound, called a mini-laparotomy.