When, Wokingham resident Mrs Smith, 40, gave birth to a healthy baby boy it marked the end of a long journey.
12 years previously, mother of two, Mrs Smith underwent sterilisation surgery after deciding not to have any further children. This changed after she divorced and remarried in 2007. Initially, her and her husband hadn’t planned on having any more children, but in 2010 they changed their mind and started looking at the option of reversal surgery.
“I didn’t know much about the procedure and found no one to talk to in the community, so I did an internet search to find out more.”
At this point she came across Mr Alex Swanton, Consultant Gynaecologist and Specialist in Reproductive Medicine & Surgery, at Spire Dunedin Hospital in Reading.
Following a consultation with Mr Swanton in May 2010, he performed an open reversal of a sterilisation on Mrs Smith and by December she had fallen pregnant.
According to Mr Swanton, Mrs Smith’s case is not that uncommon. “Patients opt to undergo a female sterilisation as it is considered to be a permanent form of contraception. Situations can change though and as a result 20% of women who opt for a sterilisation, also opt for sterilisation reversal.”
The operation involves reconnecting the fallopian tubes that were cut and sealed during the initial sterilisation. By having the surgery, there are no guarantees that conception will be successful however, depending on a number of factors, success rates can be between 50% and 70%.
When asked what advice she could give woman who may be considered reversing a sterilisation Mrs Smith added “I would recommend Mr Swanton to anyone in a similar situation to mine. He works miracles and I’m extremely grateful to him!”
Reversal of a sterilisation is considered a low-priority procedure and as a result is only offered in the private sector costing in the region of £3,500.