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What is Salpingitis?

Salpingitis is the inflammation of the fallopian tubes. The fallopian tubes extend from the uterus, one on each side, and both open near an ovary.

When inflammation occurs, extra fluid secretion or pus collects inside the fallopian tube. Infection of one fallopian tube usually leads to infection of the other. This occurs because the bacteria migrate via the nearby lymph vessels.

Salpingitis is one of the most common causes of female infertility. If salpingitis is not promptly treated, the infection may permanently damage the fallopian tube so that the eggs released each menstrual cycle can't meet up with sperm.

Salpingitis is sometimes called pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)

Types of Salpingitis

There are two types of salpingitis: acute and chronic.

In acute salpingitis, the fallopian tubes become red and swollen, and secrete extra fluid so that the inner walls of the tubes often stick together. Sometimes the fallopian tubes may stick to nearby structures such as the intestines. In rare cases fallopian tube ruptures and causes a dangerous infection of the abdominal cavity.

Chronic salpingitis usually follows an acute attack. Chronic salpingitis is milder, longer lasting and may not produce many noticeable symptoms.

What are the Symptoms of Salpingitis?

In mild cases of salpingitis, symptoms may not be present. When symptoms are present, they usually appear after the menstrual period. The most common symptoms of salpingitis are:

  • Abnormal color in vaginal discharge
  • Abnormal smell in vaginal discharge
  • Spotting between periods
  • Painful periods
  • Pain during ovulation
  • Uncomfortable or painful sexual intercourse
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain on both sides
  • Lower back pain
  • Frequent urination
  • Nausea and vomiting

What Causes Salpingitis?

In most cases, salpingitis is caused by a bacterial infection. The common types of bacteria that cause salpingitis are: Mycoplasma, Staphylococcus, and Streptococcus. However, it can also be caused by sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea and chlamydia.

What are the Treatment options for Salpingitis?

The most common treatment options for salpingitis are antibiotics.

Complications of Salpingitis

Some of the most common complications of salpingitis are:

  • Infection to nearby structures, such as the ovaries or uterus
  • Infection of sex partners
  • An abscess on the ovary
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Infertility

How is Salpingitis Diagnosed?

Your doctor can diagnose salpingitis by: Pelvic examination, blood tests and a mucus swab.

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