Hysteroscopy is an examination of the inside of the womb using a camera to identify pathology. The common indications for this examination include menstrual problems, fertility problems, vaginal bleeding after the menopause and investigation of pathology detected on an ultrasound scan of the pelvis.
Hysteroscopy clinic is situated within the Women’s Health Unit. The appointments are twenty minutes long and it includes the time for pre-and post- procedure consultations. In addition to the doctor performing the examination, a nurse will also be present in the examination room to support you. There is no need for you to fast before the procedure.
If you wish to change or are unable to keep an appointment for any reason, including having a heavy period, please phone the Women’s Health Unit as soon as possible so that your appointment can be offered to another patient (01246 513224). On the day of your appointment if you are on a period and the bleeding is more than light please cancel and rearrange the appointment by calling the above number. We automatically discharge and refer patients back to their GP if they fail to attend the first appointment.
Patients are advised to take two paracetamol tablets and/or 400mgs of Ibuprofen an hour before their appointments for pain relief. Administration of a local anaesthetic injection into the neck of the womb may be necessary for some patients.
The patient information leaflet provides information about the hysteroscopy procedure and its side effects and possible complications. Some patients may experience discomfort or pain in their lower abdomen during and after the procedure and taking pain killers before the hysteroscopy helps to reduce it. Most patients manage without the local anaesthetic injection.
Saline is used to see inside the lining of womb. You may feel wet. The procedure usually lasts for 10-15 minutes. The procedure is usually quick and safe and is carried out with little pain or discomfort. However everyone’s experience of pain is different and some women may find the procedure painful. If it is too painful speak to your clinician who can stop the procedure or offer local anaesthetic.
It is recommended that you take simple pain relief like Paracetamol 1-2 hrs before the procedure.
Biopsy from the lining of the womb is usually taken after the camera examination and most patients experience some degree of pain during this. Taking oral pain killers before the hysteroscopy may help to reduce it but local anaesthetic injection into the neck of the womb has minimal or no effect on the pain experienced during the biopsy.
After the Examination
The doctor who performed the hysteroscopy will inform you of the findings and may discuss with you the appropriate treatment options or may refer you back to your consultant to agree on a plan of management for your particular problem. If pathology, such as polyps, is found inside your womb, the doctor may recommend admission to hospital at a later date as a day-case patient for its removal under a general anaesthetic.
You may drive home after the procedure. You may take paracetamol or Ibuprofen for pain relief if required. We will inform you of the result of the biopsy by letter and it may take up to three weeks.
A patient information leaflet will be given to you when you are booked for hysteroscopy, if not, it can be accessed here.