What is a Hysteroscopy?
Hysteroscopy is a procedure that allows your doctor to look inside your uterus in order to diagnose and treat various gynecological conditions, including abnormal bleeding. Hysteroscopy is done using a hysteroscope, a thin, lighted tube that is inserted into the vagina to examine the cervix and the inside of the uterus.
Hysteroscopy can be used to investigate symptoms or problems or to perform minor surgical procedures.
How do you prepare for a Hysteroscopy?
Your Viva Eve healthcare provider will provide you with detailed instructions to follow before the hysteroscopy procedure. These instructions may include:
- Fasting: You may be required to avoid eating or drinking for a specific period before the procedure, typically starting at midnight the night before.
- Medications: you will be advised on whether to continue or temporarily stop any medications or supplements you are currently taking.
- Cervical preparation: Depending on the specific hysteroscopy procedure planned, your healthcare provider may recommend cervical preparation, such as taking medication or using cervical dilators, to help open the cervix before the procedure.
- Arrangement for a chaperone: you will need somebody to accompany you on your home after the procedure due to the effects of anesthesia.
Why is a Hysteroscopy performed?
This procedure helps your Viva Eve doctor make a definitive diagnosis. Your doctor may recommend a diagnostic hysteroscopy if you have:
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Irregular menstrual cycles
- More than two consecutive miscarriages
- Difficulty conceiving
During the hysteroscopy procedure, the doctor can also use the hysteroscope to remove cells from your uterine lining, so that they can be checked for abnormalities under a microscope.
This procedure can also be used as an alternative to more invasive surgeries. Hysteroscopy carries fewer risks and offers a shorter recovery time than other procedures, but it may still take some time before you feel fully recovered.
Operative hysteroscopy can be used for:
Removal of polyps. A hysteroscopy polypectomy allows your doctor to remove the polyps without doing invasive surgery.
Removal of fibroid tumors. Your doctor might be able to remove your fibroids if they are relatively small, mostly or completely inside the uterus, and easily accessible.
Removal of adhesions. Adhesions are bands of scar tissue that develop on and around your organs. With a hysteroscopy, your doctor can locate and remove the adhesions.
What can you expect during a Hysteroscopy?
Depending on the type of anesthesia used, you may receive medications to help you relax or be placed under general anesthesia.
Through instrument insertion: the hysteroscope, which is a narrow tube with a camera and light at the end, is gently inserted through the vagina and cervix and into the uterus. The uterus is filled with gas or fluid to separate the uterine walls and allow the healthcare provider to see the structures clearly. The camera at the tip of the hysteroscope transmits images to a monitor, which the healthcare provider uses to examine the uterine lining and identify any abnormalities.
Depending on the purpose of the hysteroscopy, additional instruments may be introduced through the hysteroscope to perform diagnostic procedures or treatments.
What is the followup and recovery like for a Hysteroscopy?
The follow-up and recovery after a hysteroscopy can vary depending on the specific procedure performed, the individual’s health, and any findings or treatments done during the hysteroscopy.
The length of the recovery period can vary depending on the type of anesthesia used and the individual’s response. If you have your procedure in the doctor’s office with just local anesthesia, you’ll typically be able to leave in less than an hour. If your procedure requires moderate anesthesia, your doctor may want you to wait until the effects have worn off before sending you home. If your procedure requires general anesthesia, it’s still outpatient. You’ll be able to return home after a few hours.
- Mild cramping, spotting, or discharge are common
- Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen are recommended to manage any pain or discomfort. Aspirin is not recommended because it can increase the risk of bleeding
- Resting and avoiding strenuous activities, heavy lifting, or vigorous exercise for a few days to a week following the procedure is generally recommended. Your healthcare provider will provide specific guidance on when you can resume sexual intercourse, use tampons, or undergo other procedures, such as fertility treatments or Pap smears, following a hysteroscopy.
- Your healthcare provider will schedule a follow-up appointment to discuss the results of the hysteroscopy, any findings, and any further treatment or management plans if needed.
What are the potential costs for a Hysteroscopy?
The potential costs associated with a hysteroscopy can vary depending on several factors, including the specific procedure performed, the healthcare provider, the location, and your insurance coverage.
Are there related procedures to a Hysteroscopy?
Both laparoscopy and hysteroscopy can diagnose a condition and treat it during the same minimally invasive surgical procedure.