Sterilization is a permanent method of contraception. Sterilization for a woman means that she has an operation to close off her Fallopian tubes and then she cannot have children any more. Female sterilization is often called tubal ligation which means ‘tying the tubes’, so in this session we will call it tubal ligation. There is a new method of blocking the Fallopian tubes by placing micro-inserts in the tubes. We will discuss this in the next session.
Some women have a hysterectomy, which is the removal of the uterus, when they decide on sterilization. You can discuss hysterectomy with your doctor if you wish but it is not necessary to have such a big operation just to stop you falling pregnant A hysterectomy would normally only be done if you have some other medical problem with your uterus.
What is tubal ligation? Tubal ligation involves a woman having an operation to block her Fallopian tubes in some way. It is done under either a local or a general anaesthetic.
How does tubal ligation work? Whatever method is used, tubal ligation stops the egg from going all the way along the Fallopian tube to meet the sperm and it stops the sperm from travelling up the Fallopian tube to meet the egg.