Tubal recanalization, also known as fallopian tube recanalization or tubal reanastomosis, is a surgical procedure used to repair or unblock fallopian tubes that have been obstructed or ligated (tied) as a form of contraception. The procedure aims to restore the patency (openness) of the fallopian tubes, allowing for the possibility of natural conception.

When it is Performed

Tubal recanalization is performed when a woman desires to reverse a previous tubal ligation (surgical sterilization) and wishes to restore her fertility.

Purpose of the Procedure

The primary purpose of tubal recanalization is to :

Fertility Restoration

To reopen the fallopian tubes, allowing sperm to travel through the tubes to meet the egg, thereby increasing the chances of natural conception.

What is expected to be performed

Here is an overview of the tubal recanalization procedure:

This procedure is done in two methods. (1) Laparoscopy (2) Laparotomy.


Tubal recanalization is typically performed under general anesthesia.


The surgeon makes small abdominal incisions, usually in the lower abdomen.

Fallopian Tube Access

The surgeon accesses the fallopian tubes by identifying the ligated or obstructed ends.


Depending on the specific case, the surgeon may perform different techniques to reopen the tubes, such as removing the ligation clips or sutures, excising damaged portions, or performing a reanastomosis (reconnecting the separated segments of the tubes).


After recanalization is complete, the surgeon closes the incisions with sutures or surgical staples.

Surgical Instruments and Equipment

The instruments used in tubal recanalization may include surgical scissors, sutures, clips, and a microscope or magnifying glasses for precision.

Duration of Surgery

The length of tubal recanalization surgery can vary depending on the complexity of the procedure but often takes several hours.

Intraoperative Monitoring

Standard monitoring equipment, such as vital sign monitors, is used during the procedure to ensure the patient's safety.

Potential Complications

Potential complications of tubal recanalization may include:

  • Infection.
  • Bleeding.
  • Damage to surrounding structures.
  • Failure to achieve successful tube recanalization.
  • Ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the uterus) if the tubes do not function properly after the procedure.

Expected Outcomes

The expected outcome of tubal recanalization is the restoration of fallopian tube patency, allowing for the possibility of natural conception. Success rates can vary depending on several factors, including the type of tubal ligation performed and the extent of tube damage.

– Alternatives to Surgery

An alternative to tubal recanalization for women who have undergone tubal ligation is in vitro fertilization (IVF), where eggs are retrieved and fertilized outside the body before being implanted into the uterus. IVF bypasses the need for open fallopian tubes.

– Scarring

The extent and visibility of scarring depend on the number and size of incisions made during the procedure. Minimally invasive techniques result in smaller, less noticeable scars.

Post-operative Care

Post-operative care may include:

  • Recovery instructions, including activity restrictions.
  • Follow-up appointments to assess the success of the recanalization and monitor fertility.
  • In some cases, fertility treatments may be recommended after tubal recanalization to maximize the chances of conception.

– Hospital Stay

Tubal recanalization is often performed as an outpatient procedure, meaning that patients can usually return home on the same day without the need for a hospital stay.

Recovery Time

Recovery time varies but typically involves several days to weeks, depending on the complexity of the procedure and the patient's individual healing. Patients may experience some discomfort, and it's essential to follow post-operative care instructions for optimal recovery and fertility outcomes.

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