Recovery From Tubal Ligation

Your tubal ligation recovery begins with being taken to a recovery room for careful observation. As the anesthesia wears off, you may notice symptoms such as pain, nausea, and (if spinal anesthesia was used) temporary numbness in the legs. Most women are able to return to work one to three days following the surgery. You should tell your healthcare providers if something doesn't feel right, so they can help you have a safe, comfortable recovery from tubal ligation.

Tubal Ligation Recovery: Time in the Hospital

After a tubal ligation, you will go to a recovery room where your healthcare team will watch over you and help you as the anesthesia wears off. In here, your recovery from tubal ligation usually will be about one to two hours.
When you wake up, you may have a catheter in your bladder. You might also have special socks on your legs. These socks help your blood circulate better.
Most women have pain in their vagina or abdomen after laparoscopic surgery. Your healthcare provider can give you medicine to help this. You may also shiver or feel sick to your stomach from the anesthesia. If you feel this way, tell your caregivers, and they can help make you comfortable.
If spinal anesthesia was used, your legs may still feel numb, and you may not be able to move them for several hours. While you are in the recovery room, you will not be able to walk to the bathroom, so you will need to use a bedpan. Your healthcare provider can help you with this, if necessary. The feeling in your abdomen and legs will slowly return.
Remember that your healthcare team wants your recovery from tubal ligation to go smoothly, so be sure to let them know how you are feeling, especially if anything feels abnormal or "not right."

Recovery From Tubal Ligation: Leaving the Hospital

When you leave the hospital to continue your recovery, you will be given instructions for taking care of your body after the surgery and specific instructions for driving, activity level, medication, and any further restrictions necessary.
Your healthcare provider will go over any symptoms that require immediate medical attention, such as fever or increasing abdominal pain. You will be given pain medicine to help control any pain you might feel. Some patients may also have shoulder pain, which is a side effect of the carbon dioxide gas placed in the abdomen. Lying down or kneeling with your chest down usually relieves this discomfort.
After your tubal ligation, you will likely feel tired and want to rest. However, the next day you should be able to get up and move around. Many patients are able to go to work the day after their tubal ligation, and others may be ready in two to three days; however, everyone's recovery from tubal ligation will differ.
In any case, you should not participate in any strenuous exercise or heavy lifting for at least a couple of days. You should expect to see your doctor for a follow-up visit about two weeks after laparoscopic surgery.
Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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