Healthy fallopian tubes are necessary to get pregnant. Fallopian tube picks up egg from the ovary at the time of ovulation. Sperm fertilizes egg in the tube and fertilized egg (zygote) is moved down from the tube to the uterus for implantation.
Ectopic pregnancy (EP) happens when fertilized egg get stacked in the tube never to arrive in the uterus. Pelvic infection (PID) and tubal inflammation is the most common cause leading to EP.
EP is a very dangerous condition with risk of life-threatening bleeding from the tube if not diagnosed early. EP is treated with medication (Methotrexate injection) or by surgery. At the time of operation as laparoscopy, fallopian tube carrying EP is usually removed. Following ectopic, women is at the increased risk for another ectopic.
Female vaginal infections may spread from vagina or cervix to the upper pelvis and damage fallopian tube wall and tubal function. Pelvic infections are implicated in tubal disease, ectopic pregnancy, tubal blockage and tubal infertility.
Following Chlamydia infection, fallopian tube is frequently obstructed and swollen at the end, forming hydrosalpinx. Hydrosalpinx lowers chances for successful IVF and should be removed before treatment.
Ectopic may happen after tubal surgeries including tuboplasty, tubal reconstruction or other surgical procedures including appendectomy.
Fallopian tubes may remain open after EP giving patient chance to conceive. Patient, who after EP failed to conceive for six months or longer should undergo evaluation with Hysterosalpingogram (x-ray of the uterus and tubes) to determine tubal condition and patency.