Definition - What does Pyosalpinx mean?

A pyosalpinx is a fallopian tube that is distended and filled with pus. The condition is often caused by infections in the female reproductive tract that progress to a fallopian tube. To fight the infection, the body sends white blood cells to fight the bacteria and inflammation of the fallopian tube results. Pus can become present as the infection progresses.

When both tubes are impacted, the term is pyosalpinges.

FertilitySmarts explains Pyosalpinx

Complications that can cause a pyosalpinx include:

  • Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)
  • Gonorrhea
  • Bacteria introduced during childbirth
  • Bacteria introduced during a surgical abortion
  • Bacteria introduced during the insertion of an IUD

Symptoms may include:

  • Pelvic pain
  • Vaginal discharge
  • Fever

Diagnosis may be done through a pelvic ultrasound or hysterosalpingogram, where dye is injected into the fallopian tubes, allowing them to be more visible on an x-ray image.

Antibiotics are often used to treat the infection. In rare cases, a pyosalpinx can rupture and become a potentially lethal situation.

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