What Is an Adnexectomy: Types of Procedures

An adnexectomy, removing uterine attachments, is a surgical intervention that doctors recommend to patients with severe issues. In this article, we'll tell you what the operation consists of, the causes and the consequences.
What Is an Adnexectomy: Types of Procedures

Last update: 08 January, 2019

The term hysterectomy is common for many people, but not everyone knows what an adnexectomy is. This surgical procedure consists of removing the fallopian tubes and ovaries.

This is in response to treatments of considerable diseasesIn addition, it might even be an alternative solution to avoid needing a hysterectomy.

The immediate results are that it suspends the effects of hormones in women’s bodies. Of course, it also helps eliminate other conditions that might cause problems for other organs, such as cancer.

What is adnexectomy: causes and consequences

Women who have diseases such as cancer, myomas, severe endometriosis or those who want a sex change are the first candidates to get this procedure.

The surgery isn’t completely invasive. In fact, the specialist may decide to remove only one ovary or fallopian tube. 

It all depends on the needs. This way, the woman won’t completely annul her chances of being a mother.

Adnexectomies are done thanks to different procedures. It can be either total or partial, depending on the patient.

Types of adnexectomy

To better understand what it is, we’ll define its various types:

Partial adnexectomy: right or left

With this procedure, the surgeon removes an ovary, fallopian tubes or both. However, they remove either from the right or the left.

Some women need to get an adnexectomy to prevent diseases like cancer from spreading to other organs.

Total adnexectomy

Total adnexectomies involve removing all of the ovaries and fallopian tubes from both sides. Generally, specialists try to perform other less invasive treatments first.  This includes a partial adnexectomy.

However, for highly invasive diseases, surgeons will opt for a total adnexectomy. Doctors will choose this over a hysterectomy.

How the operation works

Removing the female annexes happens through three types of surgeries. They are abdominal, laparoscopic, or vaginal.

For any of the three procedures, the surgeon applies general anesthetic to the patient. This is because it’s a long operation that can last two to three hours.

What is an abdominal adnexectomy?

Doctors consider this to be the most effective and safest procedure. Also, it prevents future complications. The specialist accesses the uterus and ovaries thanks to a small cut. The incision is similar to a cesarean section

Fortunately, it’s not a very long procedure. There is easy access to the organs the surgeon will remove. Therefore, it can last less than two hours.

“This surgical procedure consists of removing the fallopian tubes and ovaries. In addition, it might even be an alternative solution to avoid needing a hysterectomy.”

What is a laparoscopic adnexectomy?

A laparoscopic adnexectomy is good to reduce the long recovery process that other operations may take.

To perform the procedure, surgeons make at least three small cuts at different points. In them, they put pincers, cameras, cutting instruments, and gases such as carbon dioxide.

With this, they widen the abdomen to get better access. Then, they can see the area much better.

What is vaginal adnexectomy?

The candidates for this intervention are women who have already had one or two births. The reason is that the vaginal canal needs to be dilated enough so the doctor can comfortably operate.

Vaginally, the gynecologist will go into the abdominal cavity with instruments. From there, she’ll extract the fallopian tubes and ovaries.

Patients who undergo this procedure in response to a sex change use this technique only if the surgeon is performing a cosmetic surgery. If the goal is to reduce the effects of hormones, they will use the laparoscopic or abdominal route instead.

There are different kinds of adnexectomy procedures that serve different purposes.

With the three types of procedures, there are risks. For example, women can experience hemorrhages or infections. In turn, hormonal changes can occur because the normal female cycles are interrupted.

The immediate consequences of adnexectomies are early menopause, as well as all of its symptoms. In addition, if the doctor didn’t remove all parts of the reproductive system, they could have a hard time getting pregnant.

Finally, patients who go through this surgery need to consult their doctors about all possible options. The professional should choose the one that best suits their medical history.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.