The female reproductive system contains multiple elements that need to function correctly together for you to successfully conceive. If you’ve been doing research on reproduction and fertility, you may have run across references to the fallopian tubes.
At Longoria OBGYN, Leonardo A. Longoria, MD, and our team provide care to families looking to get pregnant. They can help you understand the biology that makes conception possible, and provide comprehensive care and support through your pregnancy and delivery, helping you welcome your child into the world.
Here’s what Dr. Longoria wants his patients to know about the fallopian tubes.
Fallopian tubes and female biology
The fallopian tubes are also called uterine tubes or oviducts. Women typically have two fallopian tubes, one located at the top of each side of the uterine cavity.
The fallopian tubes connect the ovaries and the uterus, joining the uterus in an area called the cornua. Fallopian tubes support the egg (also called an ova) each month, from the point when the egg leaves the ovaries until it reaches the uterus.
How fallopian tubes contribute to pregnancy
The time when the egg is traveling from the ovary through the fallopian tubes is the window when fertilization can occur. If a sperm fertilizes an egg while it passes through the fallopian tubes, conception has occurred, and the fertilized egg can then enter the uterus and implant.
The area of the fallopian tubes known as the ampulla is the most common location for fertilization of an egg to occur.
In order to prevent pregnancy, women who wish to end their fertility can get a tubal ligation, a surgical procedure commonly known as having your “tubes tied.” This prevents eggs from traveling to the uterus and is a long-term option for birth control.
Pregnancy complications involving the fallopian tubes
Some pregnancy-related complications can occur that involve the fallopian tubes. The most common is an ectopic pregnancy, when the fertilized egg implants inside the fallopian tube instead of the uterus. Ectopic pregnancies cannot be carried to term and threaten the life of the mother.
For women with abnormalities in their fallopian tubes or women who’ve had surgery impacting the fallopian tubes, unassisted conception may not be possible. Infections, including sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), can also negatively impact the fallopian tubes. In these cases, fertility procedures may be necessary to achieve a successful pregnancy.
With his expertise in gynecological surgery, Dr. Longoria can provide care in case of pregnancy complications related to the fallopian tubes, such as an ectopic pregnancy. If you experience an ectopic pregnancy, rest assured that you’re in caring, capable hands.
To schedule your consultation at Longoria OBGYN in El Paso, Texas, use our online tool, or give us a call today.