Picture this: your life is all planned out. You will just have your desired number of children then get both your tubes tied (bilateral tubal ligation) after which you will be content to raise them.
However, you know what they say about best-laid plans…. they don’t always work out. This is exactly what happened to Nancy Mutune (not her real name). Below is her story as narrated to Afromum.com
I felt the need to share to educate a mom or help someone make a decision on whether to opt for Bilateral Tubal Ligation (BLT) or not. I’m a walking statistic: 1/1000 women.. I never thought I would be.
I am a mother of four children and after discussions with my husband, we decided that we had enough children and we should have a permanent method of birth control. With this in mind, BTL was the ideal method and I went for it two years ago at the age of 35.
BTL is a is a surgical procedure that involves blocking the fallopian tubes to prevent the ovum (egg) from being fertilized. It can be done by cutting, burning or removing sections of the fallopian tubes or by placing clips on each tube.
All my babies were delivered normally so I had never undergone any surgery. Although I was a little scared, I was determined. I had my procedure done by one of the best gynecologists in town. Under General Anaesthesia, my tubes were cut and burned. I healed fast and was freeeeeee. My periods were regular and normal every month, aah life was good.
Then one year later, I missed my periods for one month…. strange!
I consulted Dr. Google as usual scary stories but I ignored. I waited. The second month had unusual crazy cramps during ovulation (note ovulation not menstruation) I could hardly stand but Buscopan plus helped. No periods, I ignored and waited. The periods came on the third month but were crazy! They began normally for 7 days then continued as if afresh but now heavier and by 12th day I had huge clots that now scared me.
All through, I was aware it’s not normal but you know us moms go to a hospital when we can’t take it anymore. At the hospital, I underwent scans and tests and the diagnosis was small cysts and Adenomyosis, a condition in which the inner lining of the uterus breaks through the muscle wall of the uterus.
Adenomyosis can cause menstrual cramps, lower abdominal pressure, and bloating before menstrual periods and can result in heavy periods.
A cyst is a closed capsule or sac-like structure, usually filled with liquid, semisolid, or gaseous material. Cysts usually occur within almost any type of the body’s tissue; they vary in size from microscopic to large structures that can displace internal organs.
According to Healthline, having uterine surgery puts one at great risk of Adenomyosis but my gyno said No it’s not the cause and from the scans, the tubes were well cut, had healed well and there were no other injuries during the surgery. I agreed with the doctor though a little worried.
I took meds for one month and went back for a review. Scans showed everything was fine, my uterus was fine and the cysts had dissolved. Just to be sure, I went to a different scan lab and the results were the same. I was happy and life went on. Periods were back to normal; all was well till this year end of May (2 yrs after BTL).
May 29th was my usual period date and sure the red robots kicked in. It usually goes on for 6-7 days since I was a teen. Though I was cramping a little more than normal, it didn’t seem unusual, but on the 5th day when it’s supposed to be just a light flow, I had some fairly huge clots and I got worried. Come day 6 it stopped and by the 7th day, I was completely dry so I relaxed. That was 4th June.
Well, 4th June and all was well. I had just undone my hair and planned to go to the salon on Tuesday. My husband was on his annual leave and was around. Come Tuesday 5th June, I wake up hale and hearty, I prepare kids for school, hubby goes for his usual morning jog and is back, showers ready for breakfast afterward we go to town. The small kid is picked at 8 am, I prepare him, I’m full of energy and I’m done just waiting for his school van.
Suddenly I feel a sharp pain in my lower abdomen, something like needles piercing me, then painful cramps alas it gets worse I feel like gas pain, I ask my husband to take the kid to the van as I felt the urge to relieve myself in the toilet. I go and there is a bout of diarrhea, with a very sharp, unimaginable pain.
I take a painkiller I had in the house Brufen 400mg but 2 hrs later it did not relieve the pain. I call my friend to explain, she tells me to try shower we go to hospital. We get ready and off to town my hair looking like a bush. I’m still cramping and I’m now concerned when hubby convinces me to just go to the hospital first to rule out reoccurrence of Adenomyosis. Off we go to Nairobi Women’s hospital. At the triage, my BP is very low, I had gained 1kg from the previous normal weight. No long queue, I’m in good hands.
So I narrate my story, she examines my tummy, the pain is now intense and everywhere she presses ouch!!! The gynecologist then asked about my chosen Family Planning method, last normal menstrual period, how many kids and if I gave birth through a caesarian section or normally.
She hands me three request sheets and tells me “go first to the pharmacy, give them this they’ll direct you to a nurse and get this injection to relieve your pain. She insists pharmacy first. Then go for a scan and then go to the lab for a full Haemogram, and HGC (pregnancy) test “…what??? she smiles and asks me if I don’t think it’s possible. I sit back and ask her how now? My tubes were cut two years ago and I just finished my periods one day ago!
The doctor confidently tells me “it’s very much possible. But just go for the test so we rule out. I leave confused. All the time my husband is waiting outside (he doesn’t like following me in doc’s office unless it’s really necessary). I tell him and he laughs saying it can’t be possible.
OK, I get the shot, which is very painful and at the lab they take blood samples then I proceed to scan lab. My bladder is full making the pain worse. The Sonographer explains that he can see a fairly big cyst and a lot of fluid. He takes his time, but nothing else. He says no foetus anywhere…mmmm I’m at least relieved. Husband says “I told you it’s not possible “…I tell him let’s wait for lab results.
All this is taking quite some time and after a few more minutes, the lab results are out. The shock on me!!! Pregnancy test (from blood sample) POSITIVE and everything else is very good (Haemogram). How now??? We are shocked and confused as well.
I forgot to mention that I was experiencing chest pains..a sharp pain that was emanating from my left side of the tummy straight to my left side of the chest somewhere under the breast. I had mentioned it to the lady gynae but she didn’t say much about it and didn’t check my chest. So I thought she had ignored it.
OK back to General Practioner’s office as the gynecologist had to attend an emergency. He looks at the images from the scan and explains that the cyst is big and seems there is a lot of fluid in my uterus. Then lab results he says everything is clean! Then I point out the pregnancy results at bottom of the sheet and he goes “Wait a minute! What do I see here? This is interesting!”
He then refers to the notes the gynae on my file and he sees I’ve done BTL and had just finished my menses a day before. He puts his pen down leans back and looks at me looking amused.
He asks me, “How old are you again? When you walked in, I was sure you are about 22 yrs, but your file says something I can’t believe.” Everything is not adding up!
I ask him to explain what he meant and he tells me that my case can only be handled by the gynaecologist, whom he then calls. She tells him to admit me as an inpatient.
“What?! this must a big joke!” I stand and laugh.