30 May Basics of Hysteroscopy for Infertility Workup
A hysteroscopy is an examination of the inside of the cervix and uterus. A thin, lighted tube is used to do the exam, which is called a hysteroscope. The healthcare provider performs the hysteroscope to take a tissue sample (biopsy), prevent bleeding by destroying the tissue, or to remove polyps and fibroid growths. T
Why is the hysteroscopy done?
The healthcare provider performs the hysteroscopy in his office or an outpatient center. You may require a hysteroscopy for:
- Abnormal uterine bleeding
- Abnormal Pap test results
- Bleeding after menopause
- To diagnose the cause of infertility
- For repeated miscarriages
- To find and remove displaced IUDs
- To examine and remove polyps, scar tissue, and/or fibroids
- To remove the endometrial lining (when heavy bleeding occurs)
How do I prepare for a hysteroscopy?
The top fertility doctor will first examine you to assess for certain medical conditions that could interfere. These include a swollen bladder, vaginal discharge, pelvic inflammatory disease, or an inflamed cervix. Make sure the doctor knows about any blood-thinning medicines you are taking (anticoagulants and aspirin). The doctor will go over the pros and cons of the procedure and have you sign an informed consent paper. You must not eat or drink before the procedure, but small sips of water and necessary medications are permitted. When you arrive at the center, a nurse will have you change into a gown and place an IV catheter in your arm.
How is the hysteroscopy performed?
The healthcare provider will position you on the procedure table, lying on your back with your feet in the stirrups. The doctor will insert the hysteroscope through the vagina, up into the cervix, and into the uterus. Gas or liquid is injected through the scope to expand the uterus so the doctor can look for problems. Small tools can be inserted to make necessary repairs.
What happens after the hysteroscopy?
After the hysteroscope is removed, a nurse monitors the patient in a recovery area. Once you are stable, you are permitted to go home. Vaginal bleeding and cramping is expected for a few days after the procedure. Report any signs of infection, such as heavy bleeding, discharge, or fever. You are not permitted to douche or have sex for two weeks after the procedure. Take it easy for 1-2 days, and then gradually return to normal activities.
Will the hysteroscopy hurt?
If you are awake during the procedure, you may feel some menstrual cramping at times. The doctor will take necessary measures to relieve the pain. Pain is related to:
- The type of sedative or anesthesia used
- The size of the hysteroscope
- The reason for the test
- Whether you have delivered a baby in the past
- If or not you are going through menopause