post tubal ligation syndrome

Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome: It’s Real

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I was 26 years old, married, and a mother to 5 children under the age of 6, including a set of twins when I had a tubal ligation. I had always had a problem with various forms of contraception. I am a migraine sufferer and birth control pills just did not agree with me. The depo injection gave me one of the worst migraines I’d ever experienced, so that was not an option. I tried having a coil IUD fitted, but I was assaulted by my doctor. I left with it half hanging out of my cervix. I was later told that it released the same hormones as the pill and so again, not an option. I was left with the use of a contraceptive diaphragm. This was not great either. I would also like to add up until this point, I was very fertile. I had regular, painless periods and a very healthy reproductive system.

After the birth of my twins, I was again approached about birth control by a doctor. I explained all the problems I had with previous methods and was advised that the best option would be a tubal ligation; a form of female sterilization. Tubal ligation meant no more pills, no more diaphragm or condoms or trying to avoid sex during ovulation. I thought the tubal ligation would mean no more worrying. I was sold immediately. I was told it was a simple procedure performed via keyhole surgery. I would be in and out the same day. My Fallopian tubes would be cut burned and folded back on themselves. The only long term side effect that I was informed about was I would no longer be able to have children.

A few days after my consultation, I had my appointment for surgery booked. Besides the expected soreness after the operation, everything went well. I was fully recovered within a week or so. I was happy that I no longer had to worry about falling pregnant. I could now get on with my life and enjoy my beautiful children. It was not long after that my nightmare began and it is only now, 15 years later, that I discovered the term that explains all of the health issues that came up after my surgery. It is called: Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome or PTLS.

Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome

The first thing I noticed after my surgery were the mood swings. I became depressed, aggressive, and tearful. I was just not myself. I thought maybe it was the emotional impact of no longer being able to reproduce, somehow feeling less of a woman. I thought it would pass. It didn’t. I have suffered with these symptoms for the past 15 years: depression, anxiety, anger, and tiredness, none of which I had before the tubal ligation. I am no longer the same person. My hormones were, and still are, all over the place. My marriage broke down and I lost friends. I was diagnosed with depression and given anti-depression tablets. They never really helped and so I stopped taking them and just learnt to live with it.

The physical symptoms began soon after as well. I developed heavy, painful, and irregular periods. Sometimes I would bleed for as long as 6 weeks at a time and I always spotted between periods. I was given norethisterone tablets to try and stop the bleeding, which I couldn’t take because of the migraines, and iron tablets to cope with the blood loss. I have not had a regular period since the surgery. I had so many tests but nothing could be found. I was told I was normal and no one could explain why I bled all the time it was just one of those things. Before the surgery, I had regular, painless periods.

Fast forward 15 years and I have since been diagnosed with uterine polyps, endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome, fibromyalgia, chronic depression and had a severe case of pelvic inflammatory disease that could have killed me. I suffer with constant pelvic pain, back pain, bleeding, weight gain, hair loss, and acne. The list is endless but mention the words post tubal ligation syndrome to a doctor and you are immediately dismissed. No such thing they say. I’m sorry but I do believe there is such a thing. My health declined rapidly after the surgery and there are thousands of women with similar stories to mine. Some have been lucky enough to undergo a tubal litigation reversal and their symptoms have all but gone. It is about time the medical profession woke up and researched this issue properly. Women deserve to know the truth so they can at least make an informed decision before destroying their body unknowingly. PTLS is real. It is out there and thousands are suffering as a result.

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  1. Yesterday I had my tubal ligation reversal! I can’t wait to be myself again.. I am 43 years old and tied my tubes two years ago! My life was a hell since that day! I had really long hair that melted day by day and now is too short and damaged! Depression, heavy and painful periods and very low sex drive. My doctor was denying at the beginning telling me there is no such a thing. But I forced him to fix me! I hope the reversal is succeed. This article helped me make this decision and I would like to thank you. English is not my first language so I apologise for any mistakes!

  2. I had the very same experience and nothing helped except for tubal ligation reversal! Within a month of having the reversal, I started feeling like my old self. The results were dramatic, but any medical professional I spoke to dismissed the whole idea that tubal ligation could have such horrific side effects.

  3. I had never heard of this until recently, I went to see the dr and has some test and what not and he thinks the best way to go is a hysterectomy. When I was reading his notes in my chart he said my diagnosis was tubal ligation syndrome with a few other things and when I looked it up I was like WOW I’m not crazy this isn’t all in my head! And in all honesty I have feel off and like crap for 9 years and it’s been 9 years since I had my last baby and had my tubes tied! I’m hoping my up coming surgery willl help me to feel better because this is not the quality of life I can do any more

  4. Hi-I need help. I had a tubal 7 years ago and still suffering from all symptoms listed in this article. I have been to 3 doctors who have brushed me off. What am I to do? I live in Louisiana and searching for doctors who will do a reversal.

  5. wish doctors would tell females that PTLS is real. If i would of done my research before i had my tubal, I would not of done it. My Doctor brushes me off that PTLS s a thing. Its bull crap.

  6. Insurance companies need to step up to the plate and pay for women’s tubal reversals if they have PTLS. Doctors need to stop hiding medical information for this kind of surgery. Shame on Doctors and insurance companies.

  7. My mother, sister and myself suffer from symptoms that all occurred after this surgery. We all agree it has something to do with it. I have three kids and the only thing I’ve done different is sterilizing myself. God how I wish I would have thought about it like that. I’ve been searching for eight years now, I’m 38, wondering what caused this crazy hormonal change. I’m a naturalist and have tried multiple vitamins and herbs that help a little but my concern is the older I get. This article was a huge relief for me and instantly shared with my family. I’m am now a supporter of your website and will join this tribe of women’s health.

    • I have experienced so many issues since having the tubal surgery. The extreme hot flashes, the depression and anxiety, the fluctuations in my appetite, the brain fog… I have been pregnant 10 times and birthed 9 beautiful babies into the world. I had post partum depression after two of my pregnancies but it lifted on its own after a few monthsbut not this time. At the onset of my symptoms, I was prescribed depression and anxietymedicinewhich made the symptoms worse. I had to Google my symptoms to find out about anything related to my symptoms being linked to having my tubes tied. I appreciate everyone sharing their stories. This provides some comfort and reassurance that I’m not losing my mind, I’m not crazy, and I really am experiencing the things that doctors refuse to address or even speak about.

  8. How do I go about having my insurance cover the reversal surgery since I would be doing the surgery to relieve all of my symptoms as well? Have you ever found anything on how to get insurance to cover those surgery expenses?

    • Sadly reversal was never an option for me. I never found anything to help reduce the symptoms:( I am now 42 and still suffering!

    • Taking bio identical progesterone orally 10 days a month (start day after I’m supposed to ovulate). That helped.

  9. I had my surgery 14 years ago and I’m considering reversing my surgery. I am tired of all the problems I am having and way of getting better. A doctor actually went under anesthesia once to get endometriosis removed and went I came back the doctor said he couldn’t perform the surgery because he couldn’t find anything. They had done ultrasounds and test showing them but somehow I had nothing when they went in. I have have problems with my period, emotionally, digestive and skin not to mention the bloating and pain.

    • How do I go about having my insurance cover the reversal surgery since I would be doing the surgery to relieve all of my symptoms as well? Have you ever found anything on how to get insurance to cover those surgery expenses?

  10. Thank you for sharing your story. I am so sorry you were not provided with informed consent before your tubal. Yes, PTLS is real and most gynecologists deny its existence. I hope you are not even considering a hysterectomy despite your symptoms since it is also an incredibly harmful procedure as exposed in these articles – Gynecologists continue to harm women at alarming rates with all their harmful procedures that are grossly overused – tubals, hysterectomies, oophorectomies / castrations, salpingectomies, and probably quite a few LEEPS / conizations.

  11. So many medical interventions have long term consequences, that are not often recognised after the fact. I had a radical hysterectomy, and didn’t understand at the time, how my ovaries related to my adrenals and thyroid. Years of fatigue and struggles with my thyroid – I’m better now, but if I could do it again, I would do it differently. These are things they don’t inform you about “normal surgeries.”

  12. Wow wish I could have known about this sooner. I had all these symptoms and ended up getting a hysterectomy. I still live with symptoms.
    Thank you for this information.

  13. We have long realized that some women so have problems after tubal ligation.

    The majority of women who have tubal ligation will not have problems or side-effects. Some women will have issues. We encourage women to see their doctors for evaluation and if no other causes can be identified they should consider tubal ligation reversal surgery.

    In our experience, most women see improvement in their symptoms after tubal reversal if their symptoms started soon after tubal ligation.


    Dr Charles Monteith Tubal Reversal Specialist

    • Some of us would LOVE to under go the reversal surgery, but insurance covered the tubal ligation, which caused so much physical, emotional and mental problems and insurance wont cover to have the reversal. So many of us are without hope, or with out a way to relieve our symptoms after this horrendous surgery.

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