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10 months ago
Tests for blocked Fallopian tubes: How is it diagnosed?

Blocked fallopian tubes are one of the causes why women fail to get pregnant. It is a condition that affects around 28% women suffering from infertility. Also, there are no key symptoms that indicate blocked tubes, which makes it difficult to diagnose. In most cases, women who face difficulty in conceiving are advised to undergo diagnosis for blocked fallopian tubes. If your gynaecologist suspects this condition, she might recommend few tests to detect blocked tubes. These include saline salpingosonography (SSG), hysterosalpingography (HSG) and laparoscopy. Dr Anagha Karkhanis, Gynecologist, Co-founder of Cocoon Fertility, Thane explains about the diagnosis. Here’s more on what is blocked tubes and what are its causes.

Tests to detect blocked tubes

The principle of all the tests used to detect blocked tubes is to see if fluid can flow freely through the fallopian tubes. The fluid is passed through the uterus and comes out easily from the other free end attached.

SSG (saline salpingosonography): This test can be performed in an OPD clinic. It takes 15 minutes and done under ultrasound (sonography). The patient doesn’t need anaesthesia as it is well tolerated. Women usually prefer SSG over other diagnostic procedures for blocked tubes. In this, sterile saline is passed through the uterus and checked as the fluid flows through the tube. The tubes appear grey and the fluid (will is water and dense) appears black.

HSG (hysterosalpingography): A procedure that is done under X-ray unit. In this multiple X-rays are taken to look at the fallopian tubes and uterus. The test hardly takes five minutes. In this, a dye is passed through the uterus and X-rays are taken as the technician checks if the dye is coming out from the other end. It is slightly painful the technician inserts a thin tube through which the dye is passed.

Laparoscopy:  Unlike HSG, in this, a dye is passed from the uterus and is observed under direct vision as the fluid passes through the tube and comes out. This gives an accurate idea of how well the fluid is flowing and if there’s any blockage in the tubes providing a direct evidence.

Which test gives an accurate result?

Laparoscopy is the GOLD standard to detect blocked fallopian tubes. If SSG and HSG are compared, then the sensitivity of SSG is better although the specificity of both are the same. Also, HSG is more painful than SSG.

Also read about the symptoms of blocked tubes.

Image Source: Shutterstock

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