From the 1970’s until 2003, virtually all tubal ligations were done by laparoscopy under general anesthesia. Hysteroscopic sterilization has been developed to avoid the risks associated with laparoscopy (bowel injury, intraabdominal bleeding, bladder injury, laparotomy, etc.). It also avoids the need for general anesthesia.
Using hysteroscopic sterilization techniques, most women can have in-office tubal ligation with virtually no anesthesia, no incisions, no recovery, and none of the risks associated with laparoscopy.
Essure is the only hysteroscopic sterilization device available in the U.S. and has been used in our office since 2003.
The Essure procedure is a sterilization procedure for women that is performed in the office by a gynecologist who is highly skilled and experienced with operative hysteroscopy. Unlike tubal ligation and vasectomy, there are no incisions. Instead, micro-inserts are passed through the body’s natural pathways (the vagina, cervix, and uterus) and placed into your fallopian tubes.
During the first 3 months after your procedure, your body and the micro-inserts work together to form a tissue barrier that prevents sperm from reaching the egg. During this time, you will need to use another form of birth control.
After 3 months, a test will be performed to confirm that your tubes are completely blocked. After this has been done, you can rely on the Essure micro-inserts for birth control. This method of sterilization is not reversible.
In rare circumstances, the Essure inserts have been associated with pelvic pain. Also, depending on your family history, removal of the fallopian tubes by laparoscopy may be a better alternative. Dr. Johns and Dr. Maxwell have extensive experience with both types of female sterilization procedures. After a comprehensive history and examination, they will discuss both alternatives and make recommendations based on your unique situation.