What is an office hysteroscopy?
Hysteroscopy is a commonly performed and generally safe procedure which allows the doctor to see inside the uterus with the use of a “telescope” called a hysteroscope. The hysteroscope is carefully passed through the vagina and cervix and into the uterus. Hysteroscopy is useful for finding out what is causing symptoms such as unusual bleeding, fertility problems and other gynecological conditions, as well as to treat certain conditions such as removing polyps, fibroids, or a scarring uterine septum.
Before office hysteroscopy it is recommended that the patient take nothing by mouth (food, water, etc.) for about 4 hours before the scheduled procedure. Office Hysteroscopy is performed as a day surgery in the clinic operating room. The procedure usually takes around 30 minutes. Intravenous sedation and local anaesthetic are used for pain control and relaxation.
What are possible complications of office hysteroscopy?
Complications are unexpected problems that can happen during or after the surgery. Most people are not affected. Possible rare complications of hysteroscopy surgery are excessive bleeding and infection. In very rare cases, it is possible for the uterus to be injured or perforated during a hysteroscopy and this may require treatment with medications, surgery, or in an extreme case, hysterectomy (removal of the uterus). Complications of a local anaesthetic and sedation, while very rare, may include severe allergic reactions, respiratory and cardiac arrest.
Generally you should call the office at (416) 323-7727 and speak to your doctor or nurse if you experience 1) fever above 100F, 2) you have excessive pain not controlled by mild pain killers (see above), 3) prolonged heavy bleeding, 4) excessively swollen abdomen, or 5) a vaginal discharge that smells unpleasant. To help avoid the risk of infection, do not use tampons for 17 days after the procedure. Sexual intercourse should also be avoided for 7 days unless otherwise directed.
What happens after a hysteroscopy?
Recovery from this procedure is relatively quick. Usually you are able to resume normal activities and go back to work the day after the procedure. You may experience some abdominal pain or discomfort after the procedure. You can take over-the-counter medications such as Acetaminophen (Tylenol - Regular or Extra Strength) or Ibuprofen (Advil - Regular of Extra Strength) every 3-4 hours as needed for this.