Tubal ligations can also be performed with specially designed fallopian tube clips. These clips are placed across the fallopian tube to cause permanent closure of the tube.
Tubal clips are most often placed during a laparoscopic procedure (small camera placed into the belly button). Tubal clip ligation is often performed well after a pregnancy has ended but some doctors will place the clips at the time of a cesarean delivery or in the immediate postpartum period.
Reversal of tubal clips can provide a patient with an excellent chance at becoming pregnant after tubal reversal.
Tubal ligation with clips
There are two common types of tubal clips: Hulka clips and Filshie clips.
The Hulka clip is made of plastic with a gold spring lock. The Filshie clip is made of titanium with a soft, inner silastic lining. Although designed differently they both cause tubal blockage and prevention of pregnancy.
Both types of clips are placed across the narrowest portion of each fallopian tube. When the clips are compressed, they lock tightly across the tube. The clips exert pressure on the tube and deprives that portion of the tube of blood supply. The small portion underneath the clip will be absorbed and the tubal edges next to the clips will eventually heal closed and separate.
The tubal clips will not serve any purpose after the tubal edges have healed closed.
Removing tubal clips
Many people mistakenly believe a tubal clip ligation can be reversed simply by removing the clips. Unfortunately reversal of tubal clips is not that simple.
The tubal clips must be removed, the closed edges of the tube reopened, and the tubal edges rejoined though microsurgical tubal reversal. Because the clips are very narrow they damage the least amount of fallopian tube compared with other types of tubal ligation procedures.
The chance of pregnancy after reversal of tubal clips at our center is approximately 78%.