Uterine septum and anomalies

There are various different abnormalities that can occur within the female reproductive organs – in fact abnormalities affect between three to five per cent of the UK population. These irregularities can often result in challenges with fertility.

Some women may be born with uterine abnormalities, and due to the nature of these they can often lie undiagnosed for many years. Often abnormalities of the womb are only picked up if a patient or doctor suspects something is wrong (for example if the patient has long-term difficult conceiving or unexplained pain during sexual activity) and persists in trying to uncover the root cause of the problem. The reason for this is that they often don’t display any obvious, tell-tale symptoms.

One such abnormality is a uterine septum, which is a malfunction of the uterus whereby the outer wall of this organ takes on an abnormal shape. This is caused by the ‘inside of the uterus becoming divided by a muscular or fibrous wall, called the septum’. It is not known precisely how many women in the UK suffer with this condition, as it is often diagnosed accidentally.

For women with this condition, they can often experience difficulty conceiving. If they successfully do enter into a pregnancy then they are also classed as higher risk generally, and specifically in terms of the chance of miscarriage. This means that they will be monitored closely by medical professionals throughout their term to ensure that they are getting the best possible care to mitigate this higher risk.

Treatment of a uterine septum

If this condition is discovered, some women will choose a surgical route to remove the septum entirely. This route is often considered if the uterine septum is causing consentient issues, such as repeated miscarriage or very premature birth.

During this operation, a tiny camera called a hysteroscope is inserted via the cervix into the uterus. A wire loop is then inserted through the camera through which a small amount of electricity is passed. This procedure allows the abnormal tissue to be separated, which then allows it to fuse back into the correct place within the wall of the uterus once the operation has finished.

Owing to the fact that this operation can be conducted with an internal probe, it is quite straightforward and has a good rate of success. Patients are typically seen in one day and are not required to stay overnight in hospital – recovery time is also relatively quick as there is no external wound to heal.

Consultant gynaecologist Mr Nitish Narvekar is an expert in advanced laparoscopic and hysteroscopic surgery having performed over 500 complex operations for management of various gynaecological conditions.

To arrange a consultation with Mr Narvekar, call his private secretary D Loziak on 020 3794 8769 or fill in the contact form and we’ll be in touch.