PTLS (Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome)

Dear Dr. Berger,

In April 2008 I came to you for a tubal ligation reversal. I didn’t come to you like most women do for a second chance at having a baby; I came to you because after my fourth child was born on February 16, 2001 I made the decision to have a tubal ligation. It wasn’t long after my tubal ligation that I started to feel changes within my body. My health and body slowly deteriorated. As the years passed I became more symptomatic and was diagnosed with more and more medical problems, it was as if my body had aged twenty years over only seven.

In my mind I knew that my problems were due to the tubal ligation because they all started as soon as I had it done. Getting doctors to support this theory was the biggest challenge I have ever had to over come. I saw countless doctors in several states who I tried to discuss the issue with and was always turned away with another brush off or excuse because they really didn’t know enough about the subject and there wasn’t hard written proof in medical journals yet. I saw all kinds of doctors; primary care physicians, endocrinologists, nephrologists, emergency physicians and the worst one were a number of different OB-GYN doctors. If anyone would understand the problems caused by a tubal ligation I thought for sure it would be someone who specialized in the woman’s body. Each one of these doctors gave me separate excuses for my symptoms. Within the seven years I had my tubal ligation and saw these doctors I was told I had an auto immune disease, diabetes, new onset migraine headaches, ovarian cysts, cervical cancer, anxiety, depression and my periods were so heavy and painful I would have be treated in the emergency room. My worse symptom was the depression and mood swings. I would do impulsive things that were completely out of my character. I would become so depressed that I would avoid social events, think about hurting myself or others and cry uncontrollably for days. I ruined many circumstances and relationships in my life because of these mood swings and rages. Although I had my tubal ligation to permanently avoid pregnancy I also had to take the birth control pill in order to control my periods and heavy bleeding. Even though I attributed all my problems to the tubal ligation not one of these doctors supported my feelings and they all told me that it was “in my head” and that if anything it was because “I wasn’t getting any younger.” I was ready to give up on myself and deal with the suffering. Every doctor I saw only did everything in their power to convince me that tubal ligations did not cause the problems I was having. I was told that cutting and tying off tubes does not block any necessary hormones. I disagreed and was living proof that it did, but who was I?

After several more years of suffering and having another abnormal pap smear I decided to try one more new OB-GYN doctor at Baptist Medical center in Jacksonville Florida, Dr. Richard Myers. I expected the appointment to last five minutes and to see Dr. Myers run for the door as soon as he heard me say I think my problems were due to the tubal ligation. I was in complete shock when just the opposite happened. He pulled up a chair, sat in front of me, put his hand on my shoulder and listened to every word I had to say with genuine concern. I was even more shocked when by the end of my appointment he agreed with me and supported my desire for a tubal ligation reversal and at that point he highly recommended you.

I spent the next several months researching PTLS (Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome), tubal ligation reversals and tubal ligation reversal doctors. I took into consideration less expensive tubal reversal centers or ones that were closer to where I lived but after all that research and talking to you and your office staff I knew I’d be right at home with Chapel Hill Tubal reversal Center. I finally saved up the money and made my surgical appointment. You and Dr. Myers worked hand in hand from across the miles to prepare me for the surgery and then it was finally my time to come see you.

When I came to my preoperative visit with you the day before my surgery I thought for sure during my interview in your office that you were going to judge me too because I was there for you to fix symptoms that years worth of doctors wrote off as being “imaginary” rather than what most women came to you for. It’s a beautiful thing that you give families the opportunity to have more children but I just wanted my own life and body back to what I knew as healthy and normal. My biggest fear was that you wouldn’t put as much care and effort into my surgery because I wasn’t there to have another baby. Just like Dr. Myers did, you also surprised me. We sat in your comfortable office, you were compassionate and you took all the time I needed to tell you why I was there and why I decided to go forward with surgery. You also were genuinely interested and instead of being less interested because I wasn’t there to have a baby I felt you were even more determined to make me feel better and cure me of all the problems that had occurred over the years I had my tubal ligation. You were ready and eager for the challenge and I finally felt some relief knowing that there was actually some light at the end of the tunnel. Your support and confidence had me leaving your office knowing that if things were going to change for me and if I was going to get better it was now and at your hands.

The next morning I was your first case because of my latex allergy. Your nurses and anesthesiologist, all of whom took wonderful care of me, received me. I was prepped for surgery and walked to the operating room. The last preoperative memory I have is going into the operating room and a nurse putting her arm around me with a very warm blanket and walking me to the table also covered in blankets from the warmer. The surgery didn’t seem to take long at all and before I knew it I was in the recovery room. The postoperative period was the one that scared me the most because I have had so many problems with anesthesia in the past. Again, I was pleasantly surprised because I was having no side affects and very little discomfort. I myself work in the medical field and I was impressed with the skill and care your nurses took at controlling pain. Within a few hours my responsible adult took me to the hotel where I slept for a few hours. By that evening I was out having dinner and even did a little shopping. The next morning your nurse came to my hotel room, checked my surgical site and vital signs and discharged me. After that last check I headed back home to Florida.

A year has now passed and my world has completely changed. The improvements were slow but steady and the changes my body has experienced are amazing. I feel like time has been rewound and I’ve gained the years I lost while suffering. My metabolism feels renewed. I spend at least two hours every morning running, riding a mountain bike or cardio and weights at the gym. I have lost a lot of weight and my body has been completely transformed. I am more fit and healthier than I ever remember being. I have had no more symptoms of the autoimmune disease, diabetes or migraine headaches. The biggest improvement and the one I am most grateful for is that my uncontrollable mood swings and rages are gone. Not everyone around me knows that I had this surgery so it’s funny when friends and acquaintances comment on the positive change in my character and personality. I have heard from so many people that I am much more patient, calm and approachable. My husband has his wife back and my kids have their mother. I no longer feel like I want to isolate myself from people, in fact now I am always the one inviting people to my home and volunteering to host parties. I have been able to stop taking medications for all my symptoms and now I only take a daily vitamin each morning before my workout. I only wish that all the doctors that turned me away telling me that I was crazy could see me now. Anyone suffering from PTLS should not give up on being cured and suffer because of the ignorance of people and physicians who don’t want to see that this syndrome is real and it is ruining the quality of life for women everywhere. I wish everyone woman out there experiencing the same things I went through could know that in about an hour and with your bare hands your reversed and stopped all of my symptoms.

I completely appreciate that you give families the opportunity to add a new and precious life to their families but I appreciate even more that you gave me my life back. My family and friends will be grateful to you forever. I am enjoying my new life and I hope that anyone out there experiencing the affects of PTLS will get the same help from you and take their lives back, for their sake and for that of their families.

Sincerely,

Savannah
beccabell07@gmail.com

More Information on PTLS (Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome)

20 thoughts on “PTLS (Post Tubal Ligation Syndrome)

  1. Lolly

    I have blind copied you on an email I just sent, quoting you, to friends of mine who know the 28-29 months of suffering my family has been enduring since my TL, early in 2011. My story is like yours. I count the days on the calendar, and @ Day 26 I ALWAYS, without fail, have black & dark moods that make living nearly impossible with the family present. If I could I’d just crawl into bed for two days until the bleeding finally comes on Day 28, like clockwork. I have AT LEAST 2-4 very dark days EVERY month when I am irritable, impatient, raging, awful to be around. My husband is tortured dealing with the emotional roller coaster; my three kids cower to stay away from me, since I have no patience for any noise, and am edgy and mean. I hate it, and humbly apologize like a dog with its tail tucked between its legs, knowing, even as I scream, that THIS is not the woman I mean to be! This is not that INTENTIONAL life I was trying to have! It is irrational, illogical, and the truest definition of insanity. I am eager to UNdo what we did. We made a horrific mistake.

    My TL was to prevent further pregnancy, not b/c I wouldn’t welcome more babies, but b/c I had a prolapsed uterus, prolapsed bladder and GI issue called rectocele. The thought was that if I avoided pregnancy after the surgery (which required 6 weeks of healing & bed rest), I wouldn’t need to go through it again in the future. Perhaps true, but we could have “avoided pregnancy” without a tubal. I am so disappointed that we were told there were NO side effects. When the doc pooh-poohed that concept before we entered surgery, I should have dug deeper. When he told me nothing hormonal was upset by the tubes being pinched, I should have recalled the importance of the appendix and tonsils, once thought insignificant. No part of our bodies ought to be removed (or blocked) casually.

    THANK YOU for your testimony!!

  2. Lacey

    I am glad I decided to check out ptls. I went to my Dr. Because of bleeding ( been on my period for a month) extreme pain, mood swings, trouble passing urine, extreme fatigue, depression and a swollen enlarged uterus. I haven’t been able to get up and enjoy life due to pain and uncontrollable fatigue. I believe after reading everyones stories that I have this syndrome. I am hoping that we can get me fixed and back on track.

  3. Christine

    Thank you all for posting your stories. I too have thought for the past 6 years that I was “going crazy” for blaming all these things happening to me on getting my tubes tied, I have said repeatedly that “ever since I tied my tubes this has happened and that has changed”. I have never experienced anything like I have over the past 6 years since having my tubes tied. I have been diagnosed with a hormone imbalance, Anemia, depression…I too have gained weight only around my waste and thighs. The anemia gets so bad the week before and during my period that i become so weak and pale that I cant get out of bed. When my period actually comes its horrible, the pain, clotting and heavy bleeding are something I never had before the tubal. I was a lucky person that could wear a panty liner on most days during my period. That all changed on March 28th 2006 the day my tubes were tied. The doctors look at you as if you have two heads and just chalk it up to as your getting older and things change. I am now only 35 years old, How can I be just getting older. I take iron supplements, multivitamins, antidepressants etc…on a daily basis. I am convinced that this all had to due with my tubes being tied! I wish you all the best and hope you get the correct help you need in getting your life back on track to who you were before. I know im going to do every
    thing I can to gets this reversed. I need to be me again.

  4. chasmonteith

    Nathalie
    Many of our patients report improvement after reversal. Approximately 80% will improve after reversal. We do have many patients who come from other countries.

  5. Nathalie

    I had a tubal ligation done when my second child was born. It was basically a desperate decision after a miserable, awful pregnancy and I’ve regretted it ever since. Since her birth 18 months ago, I’ve been dealing with what I thought was post-partum depression, but with all the other symptoms (headaches, insomnia, exhaustion to the point that I can’t even function, spotting that goes on and on for over two weeks whenever I have my period, mood swings, bouts of crying that I can’t control, ongoing depression, etc.) I’ve started thinking that it’s something else. And then I came across PTLS. This was never mentioned to me by my doctor, and neither was the possibility of damage to the ovaries or hormone imbalances or early menopause. At this point I can’t even summon the energy to be angry. I’m just devastated, and so very, very tired. I just want my life back. I just want to be “me” again, and I just want my babies to have their “real” mommy back. :-(

    I’m waiting for blood test results for iron, thyroid and hormone levels, and I’ve also contacted the hospital to request the post-op reports for my surgery. When the doctor told me what was involved he said he clamps the tubes, cuts a section out and then cauterizes the ends. Does this sound like something that can be reversed or am I out of luck? I am so scared that permanent damage has been done to my ovaries and that even if a reversal is possible, it will not fix things. Also, can patients from other countries come to this centre?

  6. karina

    I also had a BLT Ligation in 2010 after my 3rd , my baby is a year and a half, soon after I stopped breast feeding I started to experience severe PMS _(emotions sky rocket , moods , cryin spells) I noticed a pattern that was very consistant the last year. and ovulation pains every 14 days after my period, never fails. I have alot of crackin in my joints and an have fatigue before mentrual cycle. I brough it up to my obgyn and he suggested i try the nuva ring to balance hormones, i guess i will try it tonight dince i just ended my period. I am ok during my period. its ovulation then down hill till i blled. Im fine while on my period..all emotion release. Yoga & exercise help alot too.

  7. Ginger

    In respomse to the “coils falling out” yes. I have 1 located in my uterus. The left is still in tact. I had the Essure done in May 2010 the same time I had the Nova sure. Because of the nova sure I had to have some type of birth control but little did I know I was getting an Essure. I was told I was getting my “tubes tied” a “tubal ligation”. i was not even familiar with the term Essure! Imagine my surprise. Yes, I signed the surgical consent so I don’t have any legal ground on which to stand on. I am experiencing all the mood swings, hair loss, days in bed, loss of energy, etc. and although their is no longer a visible menstrual period I still experience all the physical pain, much more than before the procedures.
    so, having said all that, I got an unwanted procedure and now a titanium coil in my uterus causing pain and PTLS. There have been many complaints so it’s my belief/hope that insurances will start recognizing this as a real medical issue/illness.

  8. channon

    Has anyone heard of anyone springs fall out? What is this coil made of? Can this material that the coil is made of ever cause infections?

  9. channon

    Thank you to all that shared your stories, I also im suffering from this terrible experince! I feel as if we were used as lab rats!!! I feel so stupid that I allowed someone to stick something into my body without really knowing what it is! If we can prove that this is causing medical problems due to the procedure, can we get help from our insurace company to help pay to get this new health problem fixed??

  10. Nichole

    Thank you for your story. I just had my tubal ligation in October of 2010 after I had my fourth child. Since then I’ve gained 30lbs, mainly in my waist,hips and thighs. My periods are very heavy and irregular. My joints ache all the time. I feel like I’m 60 when I will only be 30 in June. Libido is gone, and my mood swings are crazy. I’m so mad, because I asked my OBGYN about the side effects and was told there were none. I wish I would have researched it on my own before making the decision to have it done. Until researching it after the fact I had never heard of PTLS. I hope one day I’ll be able to afford this procedure so I can have my body back.

  11. Rene

    Thank you for your story. I am 43 and had twins 16 months ago by ceserean. I had them do a tubal ligation after delivery. I have fatigue, hips ache, feet and ankles hurt, my periods are heavier then they have ever been, incontinence, severe itching, mild depression and anxiety and hair loss. I was relating everything post partum issues and my age. I was put on bed rest and had my twins at 36 weeks. I was thinking the pregnancy just took a toll on my body because of my age. I was trying to research my symptoms and came across this. I was never informed of any side effects of having tubal ligation. Now I am starting to think this might be the answer.

  12. Tam

    Wow!…A couple of weeks ago my husband and I decided to look into getting a tubal reversal to have a baby,found this web sight and started the process. Just over the last couple of days I’ve been reading testimonials and came across yours.I can relate ( I feel like you were talking about me)I’m 31 years old and have 3 beautiful children with my ex and got remarried 2yrs ago.Right after my last baby was born I got my tubal ligation. Shortly after that about 11 months my husband at the time admitted he was having an affair ….DEPRESSION right then other symptoms no sleeping, soar joints, weak, exstreme bloating and stabbing pain when ovulating,headaches…I could list more.My family Dr.sent me to alot of specialists came down to “it was all in my head” his exact words.I haven’t seen him since. I found a Dr. who does research he didn’t give up on me (been seeing him now for 3.5 yrs)Just in the last 8 months I thought we found an Answer. He checked my B-12 levels (average is 800-900) I was at 263.was so happy thought we got our answer.Taking B-12 supplements and All my symptoms are still there.feel like they’re getting worse as time goes by…So After reading your testimonial I know with all my heart this PTLS has to be it.I hope and PRAY my medical release form I’m sending in here shortly will be a candidate for surgery and I’ll be in North Carolina before I know it.We would Love to have a baby together but more then anything I would Love my new husband to exsperience the real me (not sick all the time)and ENJOY my new life.

  13. Stacy

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. Right now it feels like no doctor will ever really listen to me and understand what I’m trying to tell them, but you’re living proof that there are some doctors that will.

    I know now that all my horrible symptoms are a result of my tubal ligation. It was the worst uniformed decision I ever made! I will be pursuing going to Dr. Berger to get this fixed. Thanks again for sharing your experience. I know there’s hope now.

  14. Mrs. Gray

    I have been dealing with some very similar tubal ligation side effects for the last 6 years, they have seemed to get worse and no doctor has been able to help me. Like you the only thing they have managed to do is put me on birth control pills and pain medications. I am truly not going to give up, I am miserable and always feeling sick.

    Thanks this article has really helped me.

  15. Sharon

    Thank you so much for your story. After having a tubal ligation a year ago, I am a changed person both physically and emotionally. I desperately want a reversal but I also want to fight this and get the word out there. So many people are suffering from things that were never disclosed to them as risks and are made to think they are going crazy!! Thank you again!

  16. David Sanchez

    This is a wonderful story. Thanks for sharing it. There are many woman that will benefit from your experience.

  17. Carolyn

    Thank you sooo much for your story! It was like you were writing about MY SYMPTOMS. I am currently saving for the surgery, primarily because of PTLS (self-diagnosed) which was never mentioned before getting my tubes tied (of course we also want another child). My doctor, too, doesn’t buy it. He told me I was just getting older. But WE know our bodies. I recently changed my OBGYN. Good luck to everyone on their surgeries!

  18. Iris

    Thank you SO much for your story! I also had a tubal ligation four years ago and cannot wait to have the TR done. Thank you!

  19. Moore

    Thank you for your story. I thought it was only me. I just can not wait for the day that I can finally afford this surgery and end my pain and suffering. Thank You

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