What is Hysteroscopy?

If you’re having heavy menstrual periods and severe cramping, or our doctor needs to know more about your reproductive health, she may recommend you have a hysteroscopy. The procedure can give her an up-close look at your cervix and uterus and help her learn what’s causing problems.

How is It Done?

A hysteroscopy is done in the hospital. You can be either awake or under general anesthesia during the procedure. If you’re awake, our doctor will give you medicine to help you relax. She’ll also use medication or tools called dilators to help open your cervix.

She’ll likely use a tool called a speculum to keep your vagina open. If you’ve ever had a Pap smear, our doctor has probably used one during that procedure, too.

Next, she’ll gently insert the hysteroscope through the cervix into your uterus. Then she’ll push gas or liquid-like saline through the hysteroscope into your uterus to expand it. This will give her a clear view of its lining and the opening of your fallopian tubes through the hysteroscope.

Why would I need the procedure?

During a hysteroscopy, your doctor inserts a hysteroscope — a thin tube with a light on the end — into your vagina. She’ll be able to see into your cervix and inside your uterus. If she finds anything abnormal, she can take a sample for later testing.

Among the most common reasons for a hysteroscopy are periods that are longer or heavier than normal, or bleeding between periods.

You might also need the procedure in these situations:

  • Your Pap test results are abnormal.
  • You’ve been bleeding after menopause.
  • There are fibroids, polyps, or scarring on your uterus.
  • Your IUD has come out of place.
  • You’ve had more than one miscarriage or problems getting pregnant.
  • Your doctor needs a small tissue sample (biopsy) of the lining of your uterus.
  • You’re having a sterilization procedure as a permanent form of birth control.