Hysteroscopy is a procedure that helps doctors diagnose and treat uterine abnormalities. The process involves your doctor observing the inside of your uterus through an instrument known as a hysteroscopy. Doctors can also use hysteroscopy to confirm the results of other tests like an ultrasound or hysterosalpingography (HSG). Your San Diego fertility clinic doctor can recommend hysteroscopy to diagnose and treat the causes of abnormal uterine bleeding, heavy menstrual bleeding, bleeding between periods, and bleeding after menopause. Hysteroscopy is a minor surgery; hence no or minimal risks.
When should you consider a hysteroscopy?
Your doctor can perform hysteroscopy to diagnose and treat various uterine conditions, including:
Polyps and fibroids: Your doctor can use hysteroscopy to identify and remove uterine polyps and fibroids. Surgical removal of polyps is known as hysteroscopy polypectomy, while that of fibroids is called hysteroscopy myomectomy.
Adhesions: Uterine adhesions are bands of scar tissue that develop in your uterus and can lead to changes in the menstrual cycle and cause infertility. A hysteroscopy can help your doctor locate and remove adhesions.
Septum: Hysteroscopy can help diagnose whether you have a uterine septum, a defect present from birth.
Doctors can also use hysteroscopy to diagnose causes of miscarriage or infertility, including scarring, growths, and blocked fallopian tubes.
How do you prepare for hysteroscopy?
Your doctor will review your medical history and examine your overall health. You do not qualify for hysteroscopy if you are pregnant or have a pelvic infection. Doctors often schedule the treatment the first week after your periods. Your doctor may recommend stopping certain medications like anticoagulants, including aspirin.
What happens during a hysteroscopy?
On the day of hysteroscopy, your doctor will ask you to empty your bladder and change into a hospital gown. You may get anesthesia or sedative to help you relax during the process. You will then lie on an exam table with your legs in stirrups. Your doctor will open your vagina using a speculum and insert a hysteroscope through your vagina and cervix to your womb. A hysteroscope is a thin, flexible, lighted tube attached to a tiny camera. The doctor will send a special solution into your uterus, which expands, allowing a clear view.
Your specialist will inspect your uterine cavity and the opening of the fallopian tubes for any abnormalities. If you have irregularities like growths, the specialist will use surgical tools to remove them. A hysteroscopy lasts five minutes to more than an hour, depending on whether it is a diagnostic or operative procedure.
What should you expect after a hysteroscopy?
Hysteroscopy is a minor surgery, so you go home the same day after treatment. You may feel faint or sick immediately after the procedure, but that is normal. You may experience cramping or light bleeding, but these effects last a few days. If you had a hysterectomy, your doctor will recommend you avoid douching, sexual intercourse, or inserting things in your vagina, such as tampons, for two weeks after treatment.
A hysteroscopy helps doctors diagnose and treat the causes of abnormal uterine bleeding. Doctors can use it to treat polyps, fibroids, and uterine adhesions. Schedule an appointment at Gen 5 Fertility for a hysteroscopy to determine the cause of your abnormal bleeding.