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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Surgeries and Procedures > Hysteroscopy for Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding
      Category : Health Centers > Reproductive System

Hysteroscopy for Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding

Overview & Description | Preparation & Expectations | Home Care and Complications

A hysteroscope is a small metal tube connected to a light source and camera. It magnifies the cervical opening, uterine cavity, and the openings of the fallopian tubes during a procedure called hysteroscopy.

Hysteroscopy may be:

  • diagnostic, in which case it is only used to view the organs and observe any obvious abnormalities
  • therapeutic, in which case surgery is done through the scope
  • It can be:

  • used to evaluate abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • combined with dilatation and curettage (D & C) or laparoscopy
  • Who is a candidate for the procedure?

    A hysteroscopy may be recommended:

  • if the source of bleeding is not found through a D & C
  • to aid in taking a biopsy, or tissue sample, from the lining of a woman's uterus after precancerous changes have been noted
  • to check the upper part of the cervix to see if a cancer stems from the cervix or the uterus
  • if a woman's medical history or a test suggests she has a uterine polyp or fibroid that might be removed by hysteroscopy
  • How is the procedure performed?

    A hysteroscopy is usually done in the first 2 weeks of a woman's menstrual cycle. This ensures she is not pregnant. It takes about 20 to 45 minutes and can be done:

  • in an office under local anesthesia
  • in the hospital under general anesthesia if combined with a D & C or laparoscopy
  • First, the cervix and vagina are cleansed. The cervix is opened so that the scope can be inserted into the uterus. The uterus is inflated with fluid or a harmless gas to make it easier to view. Any suspicious lesions (polyps, fibroids, ulcers, or growths) may be biopsied or removed using small tools placed in the scope. This tissue is sent for microscopic analysis. Pictures may be taken, too, before and after any surgery is done.


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    Hysteroscopy for Abnormal Vaginal Bleeding: Preparation & Expectations

    Author: Eva Martin, MD
    Reviewer: Carlos Herrera, MD
    Date Reviewed: 04/23/01

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