How Tuberculosis Affects Female Fertility : A Comprehensive Guide

Tuberculosis (TB) is a bacterial infection that predominantly targets the pulmonary system, however it can also exert its influence on various other bodily systems, including the reproductive system. Tuberculosis (TB) predominantly impacts the pulmonary system, however it has the potential to disseminate via the circulatory system to several organs, including the reproductive organs.

The prevalence of genital tuberculosis (TB) in females is often underestimated due to the fact that a significant proportion of patients remain asymptomatic and are typically detected after the assessment of infertility.

In Some studies, In 2015, around 500,000 women succumbed to tuberculosis (TB), with 28 percent of them experiencing co-infection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Genital tuberculosis (TB) in females is widely acknowledged as a significant cause of infertility in regions with a high TB prevalence.

Here’s a comprehensive guide on how tuberculosis can affect female fertility:

Fallopian Tubes Involvement:

The fallopian tubes can become inflamed, scarred, or blocked by tuberculosis. This can make it harder for the egg to get from the ovary to the uterus and for the sperm to get to the egg, which can lead to infertility.

Endometrial Damage:

The endometrium, which lines the uterus, can get hurt by TB. This damage can leave scars and adhesions inside the uterus, which can make it harder for the baby to implant and raise the risk of miscarriage.

Ovarian Dysfunction:

TB infections can change the way ovaries work, which can cause irregular ovulation or anovulation (no ovulation), which can make it impossible to get pregnant. TB can sometimes cause cysts or masses in the ovaries, which can make it harder to get pregnant.

Menstrual Irregularities:

TB can mess up the menstrual cycle, which can lead to periods that come and go or the lack of periods. These changes in your periods can be a sign of deeper reproductive health problems that could make it harder to get pregnant.

Pelvic Adhesions:

An illness with tuberculosis (TB) can lead to scar tissue and adhesions in the pelvic area, including around the reproductive organs. By blocking the fallopian tubes or making it hard for the ovaries and uterus to work properly, these adhesions can change the usual structure of the reproductive system and make it impossible to get pregnant.

Tuberculous Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (TPID):

Dr Puneet Rana Arora says TB can sometimes lead to tuberculous pelvic inflammatory disease, which inflames and infects the organs in the pelvis, such as the ovaries, uterus, and fallopian tubes. TPID can hurt the reproductive systems badly and make it impossible to get pregnant.

Increased Risk of Ectopic Pregnancy:

TB can damage the tubes that carry eggs, which can lead to an ectopic pregnancy. In this type of pregnancy, the fertilised egg settles outside the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube. Ectopic pregnancies can be life-threatening if they are not found and handled quickly.

Impact on Overall Health and Nutritional Status:

Dr. Puneet Rana says TB can hurt a woman’s general health and nutrition, which can have an indirect effect on her ability to have children. Poor health and not getting enough food can make it harder to reproduce and raise the risk of miscarriage.

Effect of TB Treatment on Fertility:

Some medicines used to treat tuberculosis, especially antibiotics that are taken for a long time, may make it harder to get pregnant. Some drugs used to treat tuberculosis can throw off hormones or be harmful, which can change how the ovaries work and how often you have your periods.

Let see Differential diagnosis of female genital tuberculosis

Tuberculosis Affects Female Fertility

Source :

Consult Dr. Puneet Rana Arora, a renowned IVF expert in India for tuberculosis and infertility conditions.

Dr. Puneet Rana Arora, a renowned IVF expert in India, suggests that it’s important for women with a history of TB or symptoms suggestive of TB to undergo a thorough evaluation by a healthcare provider, including an assessment of reproductive health and fertility status.

Early detection and appropriate management of TB and its complications can help minimise the impact on fertility and improve the chances of successful conception and pregnancy.