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Fallopian tubes are channels that transport the oocyte (the egg) from the ovaries to the uterus in the female reproductive system. They play an important role in the fertilisation process. Tubal infections, also known as salpingitis, occur when the fallopian tubes get infected and inflamed due to the bacteria acquired via vaginal intercourse. It is one of the major causes of female infertility.
The main cause of tubal infections is the bacteria that may enter a woman’s reproductive system due to:
Damage to the fallopian tubes will affect the chances of getting pregnant. Unfortunately, many women do not even realise that they have salpingitis until they visit their doctor, because in most cases there may not be noteworthy symptoms. If not treated on time, the infection will cause permanent damage to the fallopian tube. Long-term complications can include scarring and blockage of the tubes, so the eggs released in every menstrual cycle cannot meet the sperm, causing infertility. There is also the risk of the infection spreading to other areas like the uterus and ovaries.
Therefore, it is advisable to routinely undergo STI screening tests for prevention, and be on the lookout for the below symptoms:
It is crucial to consult your doctor as soon as possible to avoid severe complications. Your doctor will make a note of your medical history and sexual habits. Disclose the symptoms you may be experiencing even if they are mild. After a physical examination to determine the level of inflammation and tenderness, certain tests will be recommended which may include:
Depending on the seriousness of the infection, the treatment for tubal infection may include:
Apart from infertility, tubal damage can lead to some severe complications like:
To avoid risking your health and fertility due to tubal infections, always practice safe sex using condoms to protect against sexually transmitted diseases. Being aware of the symptoms and getting regularly tested for STIs will also be beneficial for early detection and treatment. You should ask your partner to get tested as well. Awareness and timely treatment are the key, therefore consult your doctor on information regarding prevention and treatment.