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Infertility and Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) increases your risk of infertility, usually from scarring in and around the fallopian tubes. Scarring, a result of inflammation, can block or twist the tubes so that neither sperm nor eggs can get through the tubes.

  • Tubal infertility develops in about 8% of women who have had PID once (compared with 1% of women who have never had PID).1
  • Infertility risk doubles or triples with each additional episode of PID.2

Most women who have blocked fallopian tubes do not remember ever having symptoms of PID. The evaluation and tests to diagnose infertility may show signs of a previous PID infection.

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  1. Paavonen J, et al. (2008). Pelvic inflammatory disease. In KK Holmes et al., eds., Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 4th ed., pp. 1017-1050. New York: McGraw-Hill.

  2. Soper DE (2010). Infections of the female pelvis. In Mandell, Douglas and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, 7th ed., vol. 1, pp. 1511-1519. Philadelphia: Churchill Livingstone Elsevier.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Kirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Last Revised November 23, 2010

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 23, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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