Septate Uterus Symptoms
The septate uterus is a type of uterine anomaly which occurs when one or both of the two uteri are not connected properly. The septum (the upper part) connects the two uteruses together, but does not connect them at all with each other.
A normal uterus has only one small opening called the fallopian tube. The septum separates the two uteri from each other. There is no way to get pregnant through this anomaly.
A septate uterus causes some complications like:
Incomplete separation of the uterus into two parts, which may result in infertility due to incomplete fertilization.
Failure of implantation, resulting in miscarriage or stillbirth.
Infertility and ectopic pregnancies.
Pelvic infection and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID).
It is not known what causes the septate uterus. Some theories include:
Anatomical abnormalities of the womb. For example, a tumor or cancerous growth in the womb.
Damage to the lining of the womb during pregnancy. This may occur due to an injury such as childbirth or surgery performed during pregnancy.
Other possible reasons are infections and hormonal problems during pregnancy. These conditions could affect how hormones influence ovulation and fertilization of eggs in utero.
The septate uterus is not caused by trauma or any other physical force. It usually occurs during the first 3 to 6 months of pregnancy.
If you have a septate uterus then it is important to be checked by a doctor throughout your pregnancy to make sure that the uterus is developing properly and that your baby is growing well.
How is a septate uterus diagnosed?
If you are being tested for pregnancy, your doctor may check for a septate uterus between the 9th and 12th week of your pregnancy. During this time the doctor will perform an internal examination of your uterus to see if there are any visible signs of internal abnormalities. Sometimes a transvaginal ultrasound is also used to get a better look at the inside of the uterus.
If these initial tests show no signs of a septate uterus, then you will be tested again between the 16th and 18th week. If a septate uterus is diagnosed then your doctor will refer you to a specialist in obstetrics.
During the second check up your doctor will also perform tests and order X-rays to see if there are any other internal problems. These include problems with the placenta, your ovaries, or your Fallopian tubes.
It is also important to note that many women with a septate uterus do not experience any complications during pregnancy. If the condition is diagnosed early enough then taking extra care during the remainder of your pregnancy will often prevent serious problems.
In order to reduce the risk of miscarriage or complications, your doctor may recommend bed rest during the remainder of your first trimester and for the remainder of your pregnancy. In some cases a C-section may be necessary.
What is the treatment for septate uterus?
The main concern with this condition is preventing miscarriage. If you have a history of miscarriages, you will be closely monitored by your doctor during your entire pregnancy. He or she may also monitor you more frequently than other patients. You may need to take extra “rest days” and avoid stressful situations as much as possible.
Your doctor may also recommend certain supplements to help reduce the risk of miscarriage such as:
Vitamin C: 1,000 – 3,000 mg/day
1,000 – 3,000 mg/day Folic Acid: 0.4 – 1.0 mg/day
0.4 – 1.0 mg/day Omega-3 Fatty Acids: 1,200 – 4,000 mg/day
1,200 – 4,000 mg/day Vitamin E: 1,400 IU/day
Most women with a septate uterus suffer no complications from this condition. If you experience any unusual bleeding or pain during your pregnancy, you should contact your doctor immediately.
Can a septate uterus be cured?
At this time there is no way to cure or repair a septate uterus. If you have this condition, it is recommended that you keep all medical appointments during your pregnancy in order to make sure that the condition does not cause any complications during your pregnancy.
Sources & references used in this article:
The septate uterus: a review of management and reproductive outcome by HA Homer, TC Li, ID Cooke – Fertility and sterility, 2000 – Elsevier
Hysteroscopic metroplasty for septate uterus by L Fedele, S Bianchi – Obstetrics and gynecology clinics of …, 1995 – moh-it.pure.elsevier.com
Ultrastructural aspects of endometrium in infertile women with septate uterus by L Fedele, S Bianchi, M Marchini, D Franchi, L Tozzi… – Fertility and sterility, 1996 – Elsevier
Complete septate uterus with longitudinal vaginal septum by PK Heinonen – Fertility and sterility, 2006 – Elsevier
Hysteroscopic management of recurrent abortion caused by septate uterus by CM March, R Israel – American journal of obstetrics and gynecology, 1987 – Elsevier
Hysteroscopic treatment of the septate uterus. by RF Valle, JJ Sciarra – Obstetrics and gynecology, 1986 – europepmc.org