Hysteroscopy is employed as a diagnostic method or a surgical treatment modality in some conditions. It is a detailed review of the uterine cavity utilising an optical telescope called a hysteroscope.
The procedure usually takes about 20-30 minutes. It can be done under local anaesthesia if it is a diagnostic one. When surgical treatment is planned, though, hysteroscopy is done under general anaesthesia so that the patient is fully sedated and feels no pain during the procedure. In this case, it is required that you abstain from food and drink during the six hours before anaesthesia.
After anaesthesia is administered, the hysteroscope is inserted through the cervix into the uterine cavity. The special camera mounted on the telescope allows the doctor to see a clear image on his screen. The uterine cavity is distended using a gas or liquid media for better visibility. After the inspection and any manipulations, the hysteroscope is taken out of the cavity.
Hysteroscopy typically requires only a few hours at the hospital, or the patient only stays overnight.
If you wish to receive a recording of the whole procedure, you have to request this at the Registration desk.
Hysteroscopy is used to find the cause behind symptoms such as:
Hysteroscopy is also used to treat certain conditions. Using special instruments that can pass through the hysteroscope, it can successfully treat:
Possible complications and period of recovery
Hysteroscopy is a routine and generally safe procedure.
For most women, the benefits from having a precise diagnosis or effective treatment are more significant than any possible discomfort. Before you decide and consent to undergo a hysteroscopy, you must be informed about potential adverse effects and complication risks. We will make the decision and the overall plan for your treatment together with you; this is our core philosophy.
Most women have no complications after hysteroscopy. If, however, you have any of the following symptoms following the procedure, please report to your doctor immediately:
- Pain lasting for more than 48 hours;
- Intense, sharp pain;
- Abdominal bloating;
- Dark vaginal discharge with a bad smell.
In some cases, hysteroscopy may not be successfully completed and has to be repeated.
On extremely rare occasions, the uterus may be damaged or perforated during the procedure, resulting in bleeding and infection, necessitating medication, surgical treatment, or hysterectomy (removal of the uterus) as a last resort. Risks of complications depend on the type of procedure, the complexity of the case, and other factors, such as the patient’s overall health.
We are prepared to discuss what risks pertain to your specific case and answer all your questions.
When the anaesthesia wears out, it is possible that you feel abdominal pain and require some pain medication.
Following local anaesthesia, most women can go home after short bed rest.
Every woman whose procedure was performed under general anaesthesia requires longer rest and a friend or relative to escort her home and stay with her in the next 24 hours. If the procedure requires a longer stay, our team will monitor you at the hospital.
General anaesthesia can temporarily affect coordination and other skills, so patients are advised to avoid driving, alcohol use, or signing important documents in the following 24 hours.
When at home, you may take pain relief medication, if necessary, as advised by your medical team. You must be resting for the remaining part of the day. Some patients feel well and are able to carry on their usual tasks and activities even on the same day after the procedure, while others need two or three days to recover. Depending on the manipulations done, your doctor will advise you to abstain from sexual contact one to three weeks after the procedure.
Many women find out that their first period after the procedure is heavier or longer than usual, and the subsequent few cycles can also be irregular.
Please note that to avoid the risk of infection, you should not use tampons at least in the first month following hysteroscopy.