Pu­blished: 11. Fe­bruary 2022 | Up­dated: 14. De­cember 2023 Author: Chris­toph Müller-Gun­trum | Re­viewed by Chris­toph Müller-Gun­trum

Be­co­ming pregnant after ste­ri­liza­tion

Ste­ri­liza­tion as a safe me­thod of con­tracep­tion

Ste­ri­liza­tion should be a final de­cision when your de­sire to have children is com­plete or when you do not want to have children. Ul­ti­malty, after this pro­ce­dure you can no longer get pregnant na­tu­rally. What are the op­tions for ful­fil­ling your de­sire to have children after a ste­ri­liza­tion?

How is fe­male ste­ri­liza­tion per­formed?

The most com­monly per­formed me­thod is cut­ting the fallo­pian tubes. The pro­ce­dure can be per­formed on an out­pa­tient basis th­rough a small in­cision at the belly button. Du­ring la­pa­ro­scopy, the fallo­pian tube is either elec­tri­cally scle­rosed, com­ple­tely cut or closed with a clip. This pre­vents eggs from tra­ve­ling th­rough the fallo­pian tube and mee­ting sperm there.

Getting pregnant after sterilization by assisted reproduction

Can a ste­ri­liza­tion be re­versed?

It cannot be said as a ge­neral rule that every ste­ri­liza­tion can be re­versed. Ho­wever, wi­thin the frame­work of a mi­cro­sur­gical ope­ra­tion (re­fer­ti­liza­tion), fer­ti­lity can be res­tored under cer­tain cir­cum­s­tances.

Child wish after ste­ri­liza­tion: hope th­rough re­fer­ti­liza­tion

If fer­ti­lity is to be res­tored, women can opt for re­fer­ti­liza­tion. This is a sur­gical pro­ce­dure that is in­tended to make the fallo­pian tubes func­tional again.

What are the re­qui­re­ments for re­fer­ti­liza­tion?

Res­to­ring a wo­man’s fer­ti­lity only makes sense if she can still ovu­late. The­r­e­fore, the age and also the oo­cyte re­serve (me­a­sured by the AMH value) is de­cisive for whe­ther a woman can be­come pregnant again. You can test your AMH level from the com­fort of your own home with our self-test. In ad­di­tion, the length of the fallo­pian tubes also plays a role. The two ends must add up to at least 4 cm for them to be sur­gi­cally re­joined.

Re­fer­ti­liza­tion pro­ce­dure: How is the ope­ra­tion per­formed?

If you want to get pregnant again after ste­ri­liza­tion, you will have to un­dergo a pro­ce­dure under ge­neral an­es­thesia. The sur­gery is per­formed either mi­ni­mally in­va­si­vely th­rough an in­cision at the level of the navel or ab­do­mi­nally th­rough an ab­do­minal in­cision. The se­pa­rated ends of the fallo­pian tubes are re­joined and the scarred parts are re­moved. The su­tu­ring of the tissue is done step by step. At the end of the pro­ce­dure, a per­mea­bi­lity test of the fallo­pian tubes is per­formed.

Risks of re­fer­ti­liza­tion

Risks of this pro­ce­dure are mainly due to ge­neral an­es­thesia. In rare cases, throm­bosis, in­flamm­a­tion of the ab­do­minal ca­vity or se­con­dary blee­ding may occur. The risk of ec­topic pregnancy is also higher after re­fer­ti­liza­tion.

What are the chances of suc­cess with a re­fer­ti­liza­tion?

If the test for tubal pa­tency was suc­cessful, there is theo­re­ti­cally an im­me­diate pos­si­bi­lity of be­co­ming pregnant again. Ho­wever, the chances of suc­cess of a re­fer­ti­liza­tion are re­duced if there was a lot of scar tissue on the fallo­pian tubes. A 2017 study ex­amined pregnancy rates after suc­cessful re­fer­ti­liza­tion in 10686 women. The re­se­ar­chers found pregnancy rates ran­ging from 42% to 69% after re­fer­ti­liza­tion.


The pro­ce­dure to res­tore fer­ti­lity is ge­ne­rally not co­vered by he­alth insu­rance. De­pen­ding on the me­thod (la­pa­ro­scopy or ab­do­minal in­cision), the cost of the pro­ce­dure ranges from 2000 to 5000 euros.

Getting pregnant after sterilization

Al­ter­na­tive to re­fer­ti­liza­tion: ar­ti­ti­cial in­se­mi­na­tion.

Ste­ri­lized women who want to be­come pregnant can achieve this by means of as­sisted re­pro­duc­tion (IVF or ICSI).

In this pro­ce­dure, the wo­man’s fer­ti­lizable eggs are re­moved di­rectly from the ovary, fer­ti­lized out­side the body, and then rein­serted into the uterus. In this way, the fallo­pian tubes are by­passed.

IVF (in vitro fer­ti­liza­tion) and ICSI (in­tra­cy­to­plasmic sperm in­jec­tion) differ in that in IVF the eggs are placed with the sperm in a test tube where, in the best case, they find each other in­de­pendently. This is where the term “test tube fer­ti­liza­tion” comes from. The fer­ti­lized eggs are then rein­serted into the woman.

In ICSI, the doctor in­jects in­di­vi­dual sperm into the re­trieved fe­male eggs using a mi­cro­pi­pette. Fer­ti­liza­tion takes place under a spe­cial mi­cro­scope and can the­r­e­fore be strictly con­trolled. If the pro­ce­dure is suc­cessful, the fer­ti­lized eggs can be trans­ferred into the wo­man’s body bet­ween two to six days after the punc­ture.

Ge­neral an­es­thesia is not ne­ces­sary for ar­ti­fi­cial in­se­mi­na­tion.

Here you will find all the im­portant in­for­ma­tion about the dif­fe­rent tre­at­ments, the pro­ce­dure and the li­keli­hood of suc­cess of as­sisted re­pro­duc­tion. Please have a look at our blog ar­ticle!

You can also get a free and non-bin­ding con­sul­ta­tion from our pa­tient ad­vi­sors. Simply book an ap­point­ment here.

About Fer­tilly

At Fer­tilly, we have made it our mis­sion to ac­com­pany cou­ples (ho­mo­se­xual and he­te­ro­se­xual) and sin­gles on the way to ful­fil­ling their child wish. In doing so, it is im­portant to us to create trans­pa­rency in the area of fer­ti­lity ser­vices, to pro­vide in­for­ma­tion and know­ledge on the to­pics of pregnancy and fer­ti­lity and to help you to find the most sui­table Fer­ti­lity Center. Th­rough co­ope­ra­tion with first-class Fer­ti­lity Cen­tres and cli­nics in Eu­rope, en­qui­ries about Fer­tilly are given pre­fe­ren­tial tre­at­ment. This means that our pa­ti­ents avoid the usually long wai­ting times and get ap­point­ments more quickly.

If you would like more in­for­ma­tion about Fer­ti­lity Cen­ters, suc­cess rates and prices, please contact us using this ques­ti­on­n­aire. We will ad­vise you free of charge and wi­t­hout any ob­li­ga­tion.

  • Answer the first ques­tions in the on­line form in order to book an ap­point­ment. This way we can better ad­dress your needs du­ring the con­ver­sa­tion.

  • We will find the best contact person for your in­di­vi­dual needs. Sche­dule 20 mi­nutes for the con­sul­ta­tion.

  • We will in­tro­duce you to the right fer­ti­lity clinic from our net­work, make an ap­point­ment and ac­com­pany you until your wish for a child is ful­filled.

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