Hysteroscopy is a procedure that involves inserting a tiny lighted telescope through the vaginal canal into the uterine cavity. This exam helps our doctors check for abnormalities or problems in the uterus (womb).
Hysteroscopy is often helpful in diagnosing why a woman may be having problems with her period or problems getting pregnant. Sometimes a woman may have had an ultrasound that showed the inside lining of her uterus (the endometrium) is too full or thick. By looking directly into the uterus with a tiny camera, we may see an area of abnormal tissue, a polyp or fibroid, scar tissue inside the uterus or even different shapes of the womb. Hysteroscopy can also allow your doctor to better plan a surgery or procedure such as an endometrial ablation (removal of the uterine lining), tubal sterilization, removal of fibroids, polyps or scar tissue and sometimes minor polyps or extra tissue can be comfortably removed in the office.
To perform the office hysteroscopy, a doctor inserts a very thin tube with a lens like a telescope lens into the uterus through the cervix. Often, the cervix is numbed before insertion to prevent any possible discomfort. Next the uterus is gently filled with a sterile saline solution, which expands the uterus so that the uterine walls can be seen clearly and completely. After this is done, the hysteroscope (camera) is used to thoroughly view the inside of the uterus. The doctor may take a sample of tissue or may remove small uterine polyps or scar tissue. After the doctor is done viewing the inside of the uterus and taking any necessary samples, he/she then allows the saline solution to drain from the uterus. Our patients are given the option to view the procedure live on a separate monitor if they wish and the doctor will discuss the findings and the plan of care with you after your procedure.
Example of a standard office hysteroscopy
Can I return to normal activity immediately after my hysteroscopy?
Yes. In-office hysteroscopy is very tolerated and women are back to their normal schedule immediately.
Do I need anesthesia for my hysteroscopy procedure?
Women having an office hysteroscopy are often instructed to take either ibuprofen or acetaminophen about 1/2 hour prior to the procedure. The doctor may also use a local injection of numbing medicine during your procedure.
Is the hysteroscopy procedure painful?
Most women report only mild, brief discomfort that goes away immediately after the procedure is complete.