Hysteroscopy

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What is a hysteroscopy?

Hysteroscopy is a medical procedure carried out to examine the uterus and cervix with a thin, lighted and flexible tube known as a hysteroscope. The device consists of small camera with a light so that the doctor can clearly see inside the uterus. A hysteroscopy enables gynaecologists at the Gynae Clinic in London to assess the inside of the womb. After this, they may take samples for further analysis to treat common gynaecological problems such as fibroids and polyps.

At Gynae Clinic, our team of private gynaecologists carries out hysteroscopies by using state-of-the-art technique and the latest hysteroscopic equipment. Patients often have the procedure under local anaesthetic although in special circumstances we may be able to provide a hysteroscopy under general anaesthetic or sedation for women who are extremely worried about the procedure.

Your gynaecologist will support you during the consultation, the entire procedure, and throughout the recovery process.

Hysteroscopy is carried out for various reasons. It may be used for diagnostic or surgical purposes:

  • Visual confirmation of any issue
  • Removing polyps and fibroids
  • In conjunction with laparoscopy
  • Before a curettage and dilation procedure
  • To identify any malformation of the uterus

Why should I have a hysteroscopy?

You may require a hysteroscopy for the following reasons:

  • Unusual Pap smear test results
  • Abnormal bleeding
  • Bleeding after menopause
  • To diagnose the actual cause of repeated miscarriages or infertility
  • To observe and remove fibroids, polyps or uterine scarring
  • To identify and remove displaced IUDs
  • To place birth control devices into the fallopian tubes
  • To remove a small tissue sample for biopsy
  • To remove endometrial lining

You won’t be able to undergo a hysteroscopy if you are pregnant.

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How can I prepare for a hysteroscopy?

  • At Gynae Clinic, our Consultant Gynaecologist will explain the procedure and answer any questions you might have.
  • You will have to sign a form that will give permission for the procedure to be carried out. Make sure you read through the clauses of the form very carefully and ask questions, if you are unsure about anything.
  • You will be given a physical examination to ensure you are in good health and you may need blood, or other relevant tests.
  • You will have to fast before the procedure whether you are having local or general anaesthesia.
  • If you are pregnant or planning to be soon, tell our gynaecologists.
  • You will be asked if you are sensitive to or allergic to any medications, anaesthesia, tape, latex or iodine.
  • You should inform us if you have any past history of bleeding disorders or if you have been taking blood-thinning medicines like aspirin that may affect your blood clotting. You will be asked not to take this kind of medication before undergoing the procedure.
  • You may be given a sedative before the procedure. Ask someone to drive you home after the surgery.
  • You will have the procedure after your menstrual period and before the next ovulation. This will allow your Gynaecologist to have the best view of your uterus.
  • You should dress in comfortable clothes.
  • Follow your doctor’s instruction at the time of the procedure.

What happens at the time of a hysteroscopy?

A hysteroscopy is usually performed as a day patient which means you need not stay in the hospital overnight.

It is not necessary to use general anaesthetic for the procedure though local anaesthetic can be used.

General anaesthetic can be given if you would prefer to remain asleep for the procedure.

What happens during a hysteroscopy?

  • You will have to lie down on a couch with your legs elevated and placed in leg supports with a sheet covering your lower parts.
  • Initially, a speculum will be inserted into the vagina, to hold it open.
  • The hysteroscope will be passed into the womb and fluid will be pumped gently inside so that the gynaecologist can get a good view.
  • The camera will display pictures through the monitor so that the gynaecologist can detect, as well as treat, any kind of abnormality.

A hysteroscopy can take nearly 30 minutes although it may last for only around 5 to 10 minutes if it being used to diagnose a specific condition or identifying symptoms. You may experience some discomfort which is quite similar to period cramps, but it should not be extremely painful.

What should I expect after hysteroscopy?

After a hysteroscopy, you will be able to eat and drink as normal. You might feel bit nauseous if you have the procedure under a general anaesthetic and it is advised to take light meals beforehand.

Based on the advice of your gynaecologist, you might be able to take shower after the procedure and even take a bath the next day. Ask someone to stay with you overnight, especially if you have had general anaesthetic.

What happens during aftercare and recovery period?

Once the procedure has been done, the gynaecologist will give you a pad to protect your clothing.

You can go home on the day of a hysteroscopy. The team of gynae experts will give proper guidance on aftercare. They will also make the necessary arrangements for follow-up or for any further treatment and inform you of the results of any biopsies.

You will be able to resume your routine activities and get back to work the next day. You might experience bleeding or pain similar to a period. To avoid infection, you should not have intercourse for at least one week or until all vaginal bleeding stopped.

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Is there any alternative to a hysteroscopy?

You could have a scan and a biopsy where a small tube is placed through your cervix.

Your gynaecologist might suggest performing a sono-ultrasound or sono-hysterogram where an ultrasound device is placed inside the vagina.

What are different treatment options?

An endometrial biopsy can be carried out, where a gynaecologist inserts the narrow tube into the womb through the cervix and then uses suction to take a sample of cells from the uterus lining. Hysteroscopy, however, is the best option for women who suffer from various gynaecological problems.

According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence or NICE outpatient hysteroscopies are recommended for women who suffer from heavy periods. If they have any risk factors or symptoms for gynaecological conditions such as uterine cancer, fibroids, polyps and constant bleeding between your periods, then hysteroscopy is recommended.

If you are worried about changes to your periods, bleeding after menopause, pelvic pain or heavy periods, then the gynaecologists at the Gynae Clinic will provide with expert evaluation, thorough investigation and valuable advice.

How much will it cost for a hysteroscopy in London?

There may be a fixed price for the procedure that you will be told about at your initial consultation. At the Gynae Clinic, our gynaecologists will provide your with a fixed price so that there aren’t any hidden costs. Feel free to consult our price section to get the full details of what is included and excluded in the fixed price.

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Gynae Clinic is a website designed to inform our patients about gynaecological services delivered at Medical Express Clinic at 117a Harley Street. In the event that patients are seen by a clinician, this will be arranged at Medical Express Clinic which is registered in the United Kingdom with the Care Quality Commission to provide healthcare services.