Inflammation of the Fallopian Tubes and Ovaries Overview

fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation

A tubal inflammation and ovarian inflammation (medical: pelvic inflammatory disease) is one of the serious diseases gynecological. The inflammation is often caused by bacterial infections. The disease can be acute or chronic. If left untreated, major complications, including infertility, can occur.

What is fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation?

According to howsmb, inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovarian inflammation always occur together in most cases. Isolated fallopian tube or ovarian inflammation are extremely rare.

Both sides of the ovary are usually inflamed. It mostly affects women of reproductive age. The disease occurs very rarely before puberty and after menopause. The occurrence of fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation depends heavily on the hygiene and sexual activity of those affected.

The disease often lasts for a very long time and in some cases significantly affects entire life and can lead to serious complications, even infertility. Among the gynecological diseases, inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovarian inflammation are serious diseases.


In most cases, inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries is caused by a bacterial infection. Viruses rarely play a role here. There are different pathogens that can cause the disease. Often the inflammation is caused by gonococci.

But also Chlamydia trachomatis, staphylococci, streptococci and other pathogens can trigger the inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries. In most cases, there are so-called mixed infections. This means that several pathogens are responsible for the infection. The pathogens can reach the ovaries and fallopian tubes in different ways. If the pathogens get from the vagina via the uterus into the fallopian tubes and ovaries, it is called an ascending infection.

In the case of a descending infection, the pathogens get from a neighboring organ, such as the appendix, into the ovaries and fallopian tubes. A haematogenic infection is present when the pathogens spread via the bloodstream and thus trigger inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries.

Symptoms, ailments & signs

Acute fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation are usually noticeable as pulling pain on one or both sides of the abdomen, depending on whether only one side is affected or both. The majority of women experience symptoms about a week after their menstrual period. The abdomen may be bloated, the abdominal wall is tense and sensitive to pressure.

Most of the women affected also feel exhausted and sick. Other symptoms such as painful intercourse, unpleasant-smelling vaginal discharge, bleeding between periods and pain during urination. Constipation or diarrhea as well as nausea with nausea are possible. During a gynecological examination, the cervix is ​​sensitive to pain, the uterus is enlarged and also reacts with pain to touch.

Affected women should consult a gynecologist for such complaints to clarify the cause. If acute fallopian tube / ovarian inflammation is not or not adequately treated, it can become chronic and cause recurrent inflammation with scarring. In addition, the general well-being is weakened and there may also be irregularities in the cycle.

Diagnosis & course

In order to diagnose an inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries, a pelvic examination gives the first clues about the disease. These include a pressure-sensitive and enlarged uterus, pain in the cervix when moving, and discharge. With the help of a smear from the cervix, the pathogens can be detected and the number of white blood cells can be determined.

To do this, the white blood cells are counted under the microscope and a culture is created with the smear material. This provides information about which pathogens are present and which antibiotics can be used for treatment. A blood test can also provide information about any signs of inflammation. Ultrasound examination or a mirroring of the abdominal cavity may give the doctor further information.

Prompt treatment is crucial for the course of the disease. If the inflammation is treated too late or not treated at all, complications can arise. In this way, the inflammation can spread to secondary organs. Long-term pain or even infertility can be the result of chronic fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation.

If right-sided abdominal pain occurs, the doctor should rule out appendicitis. Laparoscopy can also clarify an acute abdomen.


Inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries, also known as adnexitis, arise either when accompanied or after a vaginal infection and mostly affects young women. The symptom rarely appears during adolescence or menopause. The symptom arises from an infection in the vaginal region.

There is a connection between poor hygiene and increased sexual activity. Affected women complain of severe pelvic pain, exhaustion and fever. Usually the symptom is misinterpreted by the patient himself. At the first signs, it is advisable, especially for young women, to seek medical help immediately.

According to the findings, antibiotics and adequate fluid intake are administered in medical therapy to contain the pathogen. If the fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation are not treated in time, the complications that cause severe chronic damage increase. The symptom can spread in a few months and cause peritonitis. Foci and abscesses can form in the abdominal cavity.

If pus accumulates in the abdominal cavity, an operation must be performed immediately, as the germs can cause blood poisoning. Once a chronic stage has been reached, there is a risk of ovarian adhesions and, if you wish to have children, a possible ectopic pregnancy and even infertility. In the case of chronic adnexitis and pain treatment that is no longer effective, surgery can only rarely be avoided.

When should you go to the doctor?

Unusual pain in the lower abdomen as well as gastrointestinal complaints or intermenstrual bleeding may be an inflammation of the fallopian tubes or ovaries. If the symptoms do not subside after a week at the latest, or if they even increase in intensity and duration over time, a visit to the doctor is recommended. This is especially true if the symptoms mentioned occur after a vaginal infection. If there are additional symptoms such as painful urination or intermenstrual bleeding, medical advice is required.

Other warning signs include purulent discharge from the vagina and a pain-sensitive uterus. As the disease progresses, there are also swollen and pressure-sensitive fallopian tubes and ovaries. Women who notice the symptoms mentioned should make an appointment with the gynecologist to clarify the causes and, if necessary, treat them.

If an inflammation of the fallopian tubes or ovaries is left untreated, it can develop into chronic adnexitis. This disease requires extensive medical treatment, which often lasts months or years and is associated with complications such as infertility. Acute fallopian tube or ovarian inflammation should therefore be medically examined and treated.

Treatment & Therapy

The treatment of fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation is usually always conservative, i.e. with the help of medication. Surgical treatment may only be necessary if there are complications. This may be necessary, for example, if abscesses have formed in the pelvic area. Conservative treatment is usually done with the help of antibiotics.

A broad spectrum antibiotic is usually used, since in the majority of cases several pathogens are involved in an inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries. In addition to antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs are often used. These are drugs that counteract the inflammatory process. In addition, most patients are also prescribed pain relievers. Treatment can last up to 20 days.

Treatment should be continued even after the acute symptoms have subsided. This is important because infertility can occur if the inflammation is not completely healed. This also prevents the pathogens from multiplying and possibly developing resistance to the antibiotic used. Sexual intercourse should be avoided during acute symptoms. In addition, bed rest should be observed in acute fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation.

Outlook & forecast

The prognosis for inflammation of the fallopian tubes or ovaries is good. In about 80% of the registered cases, timely and good medical care leads to a cure and freedom from symptoms.

Without drug treatment, the inflammation threatens to spread to the neighboring organs of the abdomen. At best, this delays the healing process, but it can also cause other serious complications. In addition to peritonitis, appendicitis can develop. Pain, digestive problems, and tissue damage to the organs can develop. In severe cases, the patient is threatened with a life-threatening condition. Advanced inflammation of the intestines can lead to a rupture of the organ.

If the fallopian tube inflammation or ovarian inflammation turn into a chronic course of the disease, a significant reduction in quality of life is to be expected due to existing impairments. In this case, the inflammation also increases the risk of infertility for the woman. This can trigger mental illness and significantly worsen the general state of health.

A stable immune system and a healthy lifestyle are therefore important for a good prognosis for fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation. In addition, there should be no other previous illnesses that could lead to delays. If these prerequisites are met, medical treatment will be completely free of symptoms within a few weeks without further consequential damage.


Inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries can be prevented to a certain extent. Careful personal hygiene, as well as good sexual hygiene, can prevent infection. Using condoms is a good protection against vaginal infections. These are common causes of fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation.


As a rule, the follow-up measures for fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation are very limited. The disease itself should first be fully examined and treated by a doctor. Only by completely healing this inflammation can further complaints or complications be avoided.

The earlier the fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation are recognized, the better the further course of these diseases is usually. For this reason, a doctor should be consulted at the first symptoms and signs of any of these inflammations. Since those affected are mostly dependent on taking antibiotics, it is always important to ensure the correct dosage and the correct duration of use.

Even after the symptoms of fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation have subsided, the antibiotics should still be taken, if this has been prescribed by the doctor. If anything is unclear or in doubt, a doctor should always be contacted in order to prevent complications. Furthermore, sexual intercourse should be avoided during the treatment of fallopian tube inflammation and ovarian inflammation.

The patient should always rest and make sure they are in bed. Efforts are to be refrained from. In most cases, inflammation of the fallopian tubes and ovaries can be treated relatively well, so that the person concerned does not have a reduced life expectancy.

You can do that yourself

Since there is a high risk of infertility if left untreated, inflammation of the fallopian tubes or ovaries should always be examined by a gynecologist. The result of this examination determines the subsequent treatment.

Antibiosis is usually carried out for several days. Since this also paralyzes the intestines and kills the healthy intestinal bacteria, those affected can take probiotic bacteria at the same time. These are available from the pharmacy in powder or drop form. This at the same time supports the immune system, which, in addition to antibiosis, is particularly challenged by the existing inflammation. An inflammation of the fallopian tubes is also always associated with a weakened intestinal flora. Pain-relieving medication such as ibuprofen (analgesic) can also be taken for a limited period of time.

To support the body in recovery, it is advisable to keep bed rest. The spread of the pathogen can be explained by the absorption of sufficient liquid – ideal are still mineral water and unsweetened herbal teas – and a vital and mineral-rich diet counter. Micronutrient therapy as a dietary supplement could also help. For example, selenium has been shown to reduce inflammatory processes in the body.

Sexual intercourse should be avoided. Apis D4 (right-sided complaints) and Lachesis D12 (left-sided complaints) help homeopathically. To prevent re-infection, care should be taken to ensure adequate hygiene in the intimate area of ​​both partners – before sexual intercourse.

fallopian tube and ovarian inflammation