What is it?
A Hysteroscope is a slender telescopic instrument that is used to let the physician look inside your uterus. The procedure of placing this instrument into your uterus is called hysteroscopy. It is considered minor surgery and can be performed in the doctor's office or in an operating room.
Why is it ordered?
Hysteroscopy is used to diagnose some abnormalities in the uterine cavity. For example, abnormal uterine bleeding, infertility, repeated miscarriages, adhesions, abnormal growths or displaced IUDs may be evaluated. Hysteroscopy is also used to confirm the results of other tests.
What can I expect before and during the procedure?
The procedure is usually scheduled during the first week or so after a menstrual period, whenever possible. If you are having the procedure done in the operating room, you may be asked not to eat or drink anything for a set time before the procedure. Some routine labs may be performed as well. If you are having the procedure done in the physician's office, you may be instructed to take Motrin or Advil to help alleviate cramping during the procedure. The procedure may require local, regional or general anesthesia. The type will depend upon several factors. Your doctor will want to discuss all of your options with you. Your doctor may also prescribe a drug to help you relax. The opening of your cervix may need to be dilated or made wider with special instruments. The hysteroscope is inserted and a liquid or a gas is usually released through the hysteroscope to expand the uterus making it easier for the physician to see. If additional procedures are to be done, small instruments are inserted through the hysteroscope.
What are the risks and complications?
Hysteroscopy is a relatively safe procedure. The rate for injury to the cervix, the uterus,
infection, heavy bleeding or side effects of the anesthesia is less than 1
What can I expect during my procedure?
If the procedure was done in the office under local anesthesia, you will be able to go home when the physician deems appropriate, typically within an hour or so. If the procedure was performed under general or regional anesthesia, you may need more recovery time before you go home. You may feel a pain in your shoulders if gas was used to inflate the uterus. This discomfort will pass quickly as your body absorbs the gas. You may feel faint or nauseous. For a day or two after, you may have vaginal bleeding and cramps. Contact your doctor if you have any of the following side effects: