Everything You Need to Know About Having a Retroverted Uterus
Approximately 20% of the female population suffers from a retroverted uterus. It's usually a condition that shows no symptoms. Your doctor can easily diagnose it through a pelvic exam.
A retroverted uterus, also known as a tilted or tipped uterus, is an anatomical difference in the female pelvic area. The uterus is positioned towards the rectum, instead of facing forward as normal.
This condition is caused by genetic or external factors like abortions, inflammatory processes, pelvic surgeries, or menopause.
General features of a retroverted uterus
Having a retroverted uterus is a very common condition. About 3 out of 10 women suffer from it.
All of the causes are unknown. However, the most commonly known one is that during or after delivery, the uterine ligaments tear. This causes a temporary retroversion. Menopause, surgeries, pregnancies, fibroids, and endometriosis can also cause it.
Symptoms of uterine retroversion
A large majority of girls who suffer from this are unaware that they have it. They often don’t have symptoms. However, some women may show the following signs:
- Pain during sex, since it interferes with the bladder or other organs.
- Smelly odor during menstruation, due to the closeness of the rectum and uterus.
- Pain before and during menstruation.
- Constipation and upset stomach.
- Higher risk of having ovarian cysts.
- Back pain during pregnancy.
- Constant stretching feeling.
- Lower back or pelvic pain.
- Sometimes infertility.
- Urinary tract infections.
Your gynecologist will need to perform an exam to diagnose this condition. They can do this through a regular physical exam or an ultrasound.
Does having a retroverted uterus affect fertility?
For many years, people thought that having a retroverted uterus made it impossible to conceive. However, recent studies show that the uterus’s position doesn’t stop sperm from reaching the egg.
It’s even common for the uterus to go to its natural position in the first weeks of pregnancy.
On the other hand, if you’ve been trying to get pregnant for a while, you might have a different infertility disorder. Try some of these tips to help conceive:
- Lift your legs after sex to help the sperm reach your uterus.
- During sex, place a pillow behind your back to keep your pelvis up.
- After sex, you can lie on your stomach with a cushion under your belly.
If sex is painful, consult your doctor. They can tell you the most comfortable positions so your sex life doesn’t have to suffer.
Can having a retroverted uterus affect pregnancy?
Absolutely. When a woman with this condition conceives, the uterus will actually go to its normal position to protect the baby. Otherwise, it could cause a miscarriage.
However, it’s very rare. On the other hand, if the uterus doesn’t change its position on its own, the doctor might suggest a technique to rotate the uterus. This helps the pregnancy go as normal.
Possible treatments for a retroverted uterus
In general, this uterine condition doesn’t have specific treatments. It’s up to your doctor to decide what methods to use. However, it’s a good idea to go back regularly to prevent any complications.
In extreme cases, some options to treat this condition are:
- Hormone treatment for endometriosis, if that’s the cause.
- Exercises where you lie down and bring your knees to your chest. This is especially helpful if you have fibroids. However, the medical community doesn’t agree that this is a long-term treatment.
- Sometimes, doctors may opt for a laparoscopic surgery to correct the position and put the uterus in its natural place.
- Another treatment is implanting a permanent device that helps the uterus face forward. The disadvantages of this option is that it can cause frequent inflammation and infection.
- In certain situations, hysterectomy.
In the vast majority of cases, a retroverted uterus doesn’t show symptoms, nor does it affect fertility and pregnancy. It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor who can tell you what to do to prevent long-term issues.