Can removing your appendix effect childbearing?

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anonymous user
Registered: 12-31-1969
Can removing your appendix effect childbearing?
Fri, 09-21-2012 - 11:09pm

I just heard this today and I am wondering if there is any truth to it - can removing an appendix effect a woman's ability to conceive or carry a child to term?

I'm asking because the person who told me knows a friend who could not get pregnant and was told something to the effect of scar tissue somehow blocked one of her fallopian tubes, after the removal of the appendix at a young age and made conception impossible for her. She also said the woman had regular periods.

I find this hard to believe and I never heard of such a thing. I hope that's not the case because I had mine removed at 16! If this is a possibility of any kind, wouldn't we be told of such consequences when the procedure is to be done?

Also, how would she be able to have regular periods? Basically, I understood that if a woman has trouble conceiving, and that if she has had appendix removed then it might be highly unlikely she'll get pregnant...any truth to this, anyone?

Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Mon, 09-24-2012 - 2:11pm

I've never heard of this before.  I suppose that scar tissue could affect it, although you should still have a functioning one on the other side so I wouldn't think it would completely ruin your fertility.

I did some research and ran across an article from Fox News about a research study on this subject that actually found the opposite to be true:

Did your appendix rupture, and what type of surgery did you have?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-19-2011
Mon, 09-24-2012 - 2:12pm

I had my appendix removed at age 21.  I was told by my doctor that it could make it difficult for me to conceive because the abdominal inflammation can cause scarring of the fallopian tubes.  I was able to conceive my DD in 6 months, and I have regular periods.  I was told by my OBGYN that I was at an increased risk of an ectopic if there was any scar tissue in the tube that didn't complete block it, so I had a very early ultrasound with DD to make sure that the egg had implanted in the right spot.  

Even if a fallopian tube is scarred, it would not affect a woman's menstrual cycle, so it would be possible to have regular periods and still not be able to conceive.  An HSG test would show whether or not a fallopian tube is blocked.

If it turns out that a tube is blocked, conception is still possible, either through IVF or tubal repair surgery.