Hysteroscopy is a minor surgical procedure. A hysteroscope is somewhat like a telescope. It is a thin tubular structure; inside which there are small channels. These channels provide lenses, a light source, and channels for distention fluid or gas to distend the uterine cavity, making visualization possible. Many hysteroscopes have an operating channel to repair any abnormities which are found during the procedure.
During the procedure, the uterine cervix is dilated, after which the hysteroscope is placed through the cervix and into the uterus. The distension medium, gas or fluid, is used to expand the uterus to allow the physician to see inside the uterus.
During a hysteroscopy, the opening of the fallopian tubes (tubal ostia) in the uterus can be examined to evaluate whether the tubal ostia are healthy. Uterine abnormalities can be detected and treated, which may include intrauterine adhesions, polyps, uterine septum, and intra-uterine fibroids. Areas of the uterine lining which look abnormal can also be biopsied.
Hysteroscopy is performed as a day (outpatient) surgery. Sedation with regional anesthesia (local, epidural, or spinal anesthesia) or general anesthesia is used during this procedure. Typically an antibiotic is given during the procedure to prevent infection, a rare complication. The recovery is quite benign, with possible cramping or bleeding for a few days. This is a safe and well tolerated procedure, but like any procedure complications are possible. These are infrequent, but can include uterine perforation (going through the wall of the uterus), infection or bleeding. Your physician at Alpha Fertility will review the procedure, recovery and possible complications with you if the procedure is recommended for you.