Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Hysteroscopy for Abnormal Uterine Bleeding
Hysteroscopy is a diagnostic and surgical
procedure that makes examining the inside of the
uterus possible without making an abdominal cut
(incision). During hysteroscopy, a lighted viewing instrument called a
hysteroscope is inserted through the
cervix and into the uterus. Treatment can also be done
through the hysteroscope during the same procedure.
usually takes 30 to 45 minutes. It is done as an outpatient procedure.
General anesthesia is usually used, although
spinal anesthesia can be used instead. You should not
eat or drink for at least 4 to 8 hours before having the test. A
surgeon does the procedure.
uterus is filled with a fluid, such as normal saline or glycine. The
hysteroscope is inserted through the cervix into the uterus so the inner
surface of the uterus can be examined. Hysteroscopy can locate the cause of
bleeding for many women.
Hysteroscopy is used both to diagnose
and treat abnormal vaginal bleeding. If areas of bleeding are found during the
procedure, the tissue may be destroyed by laser beam or electric current
(electrocautery) or surgically removed at the same time.
Hysteroscopy is done to:
Results of hysteroscopy may include the
No abnormalities are found.
Abnormal tissue growths, uterine fibroids, areas of
active bleeding, or scar tissue is found in the uterus.
Hysteroscopy may be used to
find out the cause of undiagnosed uterine bleeding before the start of treatment
with medicines or surgery. It is important to find the cause of the bleeding
before starting treatment with medicines that have significant side effects,
such as danazol or a GnRH-a.
Hysteroscopy may be used both to
diagnose and treat fibroids, which can cause heavy vaginal bleeding.
A hysteroscopy can cause injury to
the uterus or cervix, an infection, or bleeding. In rare cases, the uterus,
bladder, or bowel can be punctured during the test. Then surgical repair would be required.
If general anesthesia is used, there is a small risk of problems from the
The safe and effective use of a
hysteroscope requires specialized training by the doctor.
Complete the medical test information form (PDF)medical test information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this test.
Current as of:
March 12, 2014
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Divya Gupta, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology, Gynecologic Oncology
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.
To learn more, visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.