Fallopian tubes, named after the Italian anatomist Gabrielle Falloppio, are a pair of long and extremely slender tubes located in the abdominal cavity of women. The fallopian tubes, which are a part of the female reproductive organ, link a woman’s ovaries to the uterus. The primary function of the fallopian tubes, also called salpinges, oviducts or uterine tubes, is to help direct the mature egg from the ovaries to the uterus.
Fallopian tube infection can occur due to a variety of reasons including poor personal hygiene and /or contracting sexually transmitted disease ( to name a few). However, the main cause for fallopian tube infection, known as salpingitis, is bacterial infection. Bacterial infection of the fallopian tube can cause pus and / or fluid to build up inside the narrow tubes. Untreated fallopian tube infection can cause permanent damage to the female reproductive tract and in turn result in infertility.
Signs Of Fallopian Tube Infection
Abnormal Vaginal Discharge
One of the earliest signs of fallopian tube infection is abnormal vaginal discharge. The vaginal discharge will have a thick, creamy consistency accompanied by an extremely foul odor. Sometimes the yeasty smelling vaginal discharge will be tinged with microscopic droplets of blood. As the fallopian tube infection progresses the vaginal discharge changes hue from creamy white to a thick yellow color.
Lower Abdominal Pain
Pus buildup inside the fallopian tubes can trigger shooting pain in the lower abdominal region. Women who are diagnosed with fallopian tube infection may complain of agonizing pain in the lower left and right side of their abdomen.
The lower abdominal pain due to fallopian tube infection is best described as a sporadic, sharp pain which gradually radiates to the lower back and the legs as the infection progresses.
Pain During Sexual Intercourse
Excruciating pain during sexual intercourse is another covert sign of fallopian tube infection. Women suffering from fallopian tube infection may experience an intense pain in their lower abdomen every time they engage in sexual intercourse.
The extent of fallopian tube infection will determine the degree of pain during sexual intercourse.
Pain During Ovulation
Every woman will experience a certain degree of abdominal pain during ovulation. However, if a woman complains of intense pain, often described as a sharp, shooting pain centered around the lower right or left abdominal region, then it may be indicative of the fact that the individual is suffering from fallopian tube infection.
Pus and fluid buildup inside the fallopian tubes is responsible for the agonizing lower abdominal pain during ovulation.
Spotting Between Periods
An infection of the fallopian tubes can lead to spotting or light bleeding between monthly menstrual cycles. Irregular bleeding or spotting between monthly menstrual cycles is due to the damage caused to the fallopian tube caused by bacterial infection. Women who notice persistent spotting or light bleeding between their periods should consult a gynecologist in order to prevent fallopian tube infection from worsening.
Fever And Severe Headache
Acute fallopian tube infection can lead to sudden rise in body temperature. The sharp rise in body temperature is often accompanied by a sickening headache.
The sudden increase in body temperature is the body’s natural reaction to any infection. Lower back pain, debilitating weakness and the urge to urinate frequently are some of the other signs of fallopian tube infection.
Photo Credit: http://www.womens-health.org.nz/pelvic-inflammatory-disease.html