Category: 

What Is an Anteflexed Uterus?

The uterus normally has only a slightly forward tilt.
Article Details
  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Nancy Fann-Im
  • Last Modified Date: 19 July 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
  • Print this Article
Free Widgets for your Site/Blog
The World Health Organization classified air pollution as more dangerous to health than smoking.   more...

July 25 ,  1978 :  The world's first in-vitro fertilization baby was born.  more...

An anteflexed uterus is a uterus that is tilted forward in the abdominal cavity. Some forward tilt is natural and can be seen in most women, but in some cases it can become extreme and may cause pelvic pain or interfere with fertility. An ultrasound can determine the exact location of the uterus and provide more information about whether it is a cause for concern. For pregnant women wondering if the “anteflexed uterus” an ultrasound technician or doctor has mentioned is something they should worry about, it is probably not an issue unless the doctor has stated otherwise.

The uterus is designed as a free-floating organ. While it does not wildly float about the abdominal cavity, it enjoys some degree of flexibility and can rotate around its attachment point at the cervix. This is advantageous, as the uterus needs to be able to move when it expands during pregnancy, and the flexibility of movement also allows it to move in response to pressures within the abdominal cavity. In a neutral position, it tends to fall slightly forward, with the fundus, the top of the uterus, pointing toward the front of the body.

Ad

In a severe anteflexed uterus, the organ may fall so far forward that it partially folds in on itself, forcing the fundus up against the bladder. This can lead to incontinence as well as pelvic pain. It is also difficult for a pregnancy to develop in this position, as the fetus does not have enough room to grow in the cramped conditions. This type of anteflexion is a potential issue for patients who plan on having children.

If the anteflexed uterus does cause problems, patients have several options for addressing it. The degree of flexion may be mild, and it could be possible to use massage and bodywork along with muscle exercises or pessaries to push it back into a more neutral position. For more extreme situations, a doctor may need to perform surgery. She can tighten up the ligaments and muscle attachments to pull the uterus into the middle of the pelvis. A doctor may recommend this if the position of the uterus appears to be causing fertility problems.

Other patients may have a retroflexed uterus, where the fundus points toward the spine. This is not necessarily a cause for concern either, as long as the degree of the tilt is not extreme. In cases where the uterus bends too far over, the treatment options are similar to those seen with an anteflexed uterus.

Ad

Discuss this Article

anon305475
Post 4

My husband and I have been married for seven years. We haven't ever used any form of birth control. I have never been pregnant. I am also 29 years old and now wish to have a baby.

The last time I had an extensive exam done, my doctor told me my uterus was tilted forward a little more than most women. I am not sure if my insurance would cover such extensive testing to check fertility. I can't use a calendar to predict when I ovulate because it is never the same. I can go anywhere from three to six months without having a period. Is my body just totally screwed up? Is there any hope of natural conception?

bfree
Post 3

@Sierra02 - Contrary to what most women believe, there's really very little risk of infertility caused by a tilted uterus. Endometriosis or uterine and ovarian fibroids are more likely the culprit for that.

If you have a tilted uterus and become pregnant, the uterus is going to move forward naturally. It's my understanding that between the twelfth and fourteenth week of pregnancy all uteruses become anteflexed by nature.

It's usually quite common for a woman to feel more rectal or abdominal pressure prior to this forward rise of the uterus.

ladyjane
Post 2

@Sierra02 - Hi. Retroflexed and anteflexed are two different positions of the uterus. A retroflexed is a backward tilted uterus, whereas the anteflexed leans forward.

I know this because mine is also tilted backwards. So much so that it's almost fusing together. The cause of my retroflex is from endometriosis, (the cells from the uterus have grown in other parts of the body).

It's very painful and so serious that my doctor has ordered me to not even try to become pregnant until after I've had surgery. Otherwise it could cause a miscarriage, or a uterine rupture, or a handful of other complications during childbirth.

Your case might not be as severe as mine is. You can still get pregnant with a retroverted uterus, it's just that in my situation, my doctor advises against it.

Sierra02
Post 1

I just learned a few weeks ago that my uterus is retroflexed. My doctor said that it probably occurred sometime during my last pregnancy and that I may have some difficulty becoming pregnant again.

Has anyone ever heard of this? Is it similar to an anteflexed uterus? I can't understand how this happened since I had a perfectly normal pregnancy with a healthy baby who is still healthy at four years old.

My husband and I really want to have another child but now I'm worried I won't be able to. Any information you can share or comforting words is much appreciated.

Post your comments

Post Anonymously

Login

username
password
forgot password?

Register

username
password
confirm
email