Counseling issues in tubal sterilization

Am Fam Physician. 2003 Mar 15;67(6):1287-94.


Female sterilization is the number one contraceptive choice among women in the United States. Counseling issues include ensuring that the woman understands the permanence of the procedure and knowing the factors that correlate with future regret. The clinician should be aware of the cumulative failure rate of the procedure, which is reported to be about 1.85 percent during a 10-year period. Complications of tubal sterilization include problems with anesthesia, hemorrhage, organ damage, and mortality. Some women who undergo tubal ligation may experience increased sexual satisfaction. While the procedure is commonly performed postpartum, it can be done readily, without relation to recent pregnancy, by laparoscopy or, when available, by minilaparotomy. Surgery should be timed immediately postpartum, or coincide with the first half of the woman's menstrual cycle or during a time period when the woman is using a reliable form of contraception.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Contraception / methods
  • Counseling*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Postpartum Period
  • Pregnancy
  • Sterilization, Tubal* / adverse effects
  • Sterilization, Tubal* / methods
  • Sterilization, Tubal* / psychology