Retroverted uterus

Last revised by Craig Hacking on 18 Feb 2024

A retroverted uterus is a normal variation of female pelvic anatomy in which the body of the uterus is tilted backwards (usually leans forward, i.e. anteverted) on itself to match the isthmus of the neck and lower uterine segment. There are variable grades of uterine retroversion.

Retroverted uterus is common and is the normal uterine position in approximately 20% of all women. Its role as a cause of infertility is controversial.

The retroverted uterus almost never causes symptoms, although it is sometimes associated with dyspareunia and dysmenorrhea.  This is thought to be because the retroverted position causes the uterus to approach the rectum and contact the posterior vaginal wall, mobilization of the uterus during sex generates pain (sometimes very severe) especially if the uterus is fixed in that position.

Atypical positioning of the uterus may be caused by:

These conditions should be ruled out in a patient with pain or other symptoms.

The retroverted uterus may have a higher incidence of threatened abortion, because at the beginning of pregnancy, the uterus has to rotate completely to grow in the abdominal cavity 3.

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