A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is an xray procedure that is used to view the inside of the uterus or Fallopian tubes. It is often used to see if the Fallopian tubes are partly or fully blocked.   It can show if the inside of the uterus is of normal size or shape and whether there any adhesions caused by Asherman's syndrome.  All of these problems can lead to infertility.

What preparation is needed for the examination?
No specific preparation is required. It is best not to attend after a large meal, but there is no requirement for fasting prior to the examination. Sometimes, your own Doctor will advise that you have antibiotics prior to the procedure but this is not always necessary. It is important the examination is performed in the early part of your menstrual cycle after menstruation has ceased. Therefore it is usually recommended to perform the study between the 6th and 10th day of your menstrual cycle. Although the examination is often performed because of difficulty in becoming pregnant, it is important that you are not pregnant at the time of study. Therefore we advise that you should avoid unprotected sexual intercourse after the onset of the menstrual cycle, in that cycle, in which the examination is going to be performed.  Apregnancy test will be performed on the day of your examination.

What happens during the examination?
When you arrive in the department, you will register at the reception desk. You will then be taken to change into a gown by a radiographer’s helper or nurse. It is recommended that you empty your bladder prior to examination. You will then be taken into the fluoroscopic (X-ray) room where the Consultant will explain in detail the examination and what it entails. At this time, informed consent for the examination will be obtained. Please ask any questions you may have at this time and the doctor will be only too pleased to answer them. Following this, you will be asked to lie down on the table. The doctor will perform an internal examination of your cervix (similar to the procedure that you have for a cervical smear). When the cervix has been identified a small catheter or instrument will be inserted into the cervical canal and contrast (a liquid that shows up on x-ray) will be injected into the uterine cavity. The cavity will then show up on x-ray and the contrast will then pass into the fallopian tubes and if these are open at the end,will then pass into the peritoneum (abdominal cavity). All these stages are captured on X-ray for analysing. The catheter or instrument is then removed and the procedure is ended.  It is Mr Lower’s practice to give everyone a single dose of an antibiotic called azithromicin at the time of the procedure.  

The results of the test will be explained to you at the time of the examination.

What to expect afterwards.
You may experience some bleeding after the procedure.  This is normal and nothing to worry about and will stop after 24 hours.  If not please contact Mr Lower.
If you develop pain, fever or an offensive discharge after the procedure, this is suggestive of an infection.  Please contact the office or the hospital immediately.  If you are unable to do so, please seek urgent medcal help either with your own GP or Accident and Eerecy Department of your local hospital.
You can usually try to conceive immediately after having had a hysterosalpingogram. 

© Adrian Lower 2014