A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is a test that allows your doctor to examine the inside walls of your uterus and fallopian tubes. This minor procedure has been designed to provide evidence about the shape and contour of the endometrial cavity (uterus). It can also document the occurrence of endometrial polyps, leiomyomata (fibroids), or scarring. Also, the procedure shows whether the condition of the fallopian tubes.
Having a blocked fallopian tube or a growth in your uterus can decrease your probability of getting pregnant. If your fallopian tubes are blocked, the sperm won’t be able to reach the egg. A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is a test that includes x-rays and a dye to find scar tissue, polyps, fibroids, and other growths that may be blocking your tubes or stopping a fertilized egg from implanting correctly in your uterus.
Another test, called a sonohysterogram, uses ultrasound and a special solution to detect abnormalities inside the uterus. Nevertheless, the sonohysterogram cannot be used to detect blocked fallopian tubes. An HSG is usually performed as part of an infertility workup.
What to expect during an HSG test?
The HSG test is generally done in a radiology lab and requires about 10-30 minutes. Your doctor will insert a speculum into your vagina and then place a thin plastic tube in your cervix, which will lead to your uterus and fallopian tubes. A special dye is injected with the help of a plastic tube. The dye fills your uterus and fallopian tubes and spills out of each fallopian tube. Then, x-rays will be taken for your doctor to assess your uterus and fallopian tubes.
Is the HSG procedure painful?
Several women feel some cramping, particularly when the dye is injected. Women who have a blocked fallopian tube might experience intense pain. You can request your doctor to prescribe you some over-the-counter painkillers.
Speak to your doctor about taking a painkiller 30 to 60 minutes before the procedure to avoid or decrease pain during the test.
Is it okay to drive home by myself after the HSG test?
Several women don’t experience pain after the HSG, but you might feel cramps or aches after the procedure. So, it’s a good idea to have a friend or a family member drive you home.
What are the risks involved?
The risks of the HSG are mainly pain or discomfort, vaginal spotting or bleeding, and infection. Contact your doctor if you get a fever or continue to feel pain for more than a few days.
When is the best time during a menstrual cycle to schedule the HSG?
The test should be planned after your period ends, but before you are expected to ovulate, generally between day 6 and 10 of your cycle. To analyse out the days of your menstrual cycle, count day 1 as the day your period begins.
How should I prepare for the HSG procedure?
Antibiotics are administered prophylactically to avoid infection. It should be taken the day before, the day of, and the day after the HSG.
After the HSG test, you can instantly return to normal activities, though you might experience mild or moderate uterine cramping for about 5-10 minutes. Nevertheless, you should have a family member or friend drive you home after the procedure if you feel some cramping.