Center for Reproductive and Fetal Medicine

HYSTEROSALPIGOGRAM: WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU HAVE THIS TEST

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HYSTEROSALPIGOGRAM: WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU HAVE THIS TEST

What is hysterosalpingography?

A hysterosalpingogram or HSG test allows the fertility specialist to examine the inner walls of the uterus and fallopian tubes. This minor procedure is designed to provide information about the shape and contour of the endometrial cavity (uterus) and document the presence of endometrial polyps, leiomyomas (fibroids), or scarring. In addition, the procedure determines whether the fallopian tubes are open. Blocked fallopian tubes, or a possible growth in the uterus, can reduce the chances of pregnancy. If the fallopian tubes are blocked, the sperm cannot reach the egg. A hysterosalpingogram, or HSG test, uses X-rays and a special dye to look for scar tissue, polyps, fibroids, and other growths that may be blocking the tubes or preventing a fertilized egg from implanting properly in the uterus.

Another test, called an ultrasound, uses ultrasound and a special solution to detect abnormalities inside the uterus. However, ultrasound cannot be used to detect blocked fallopian tubes. An HSG is routinely performed as part of an infertility test.

 

What should I expect during an HSG test?

An HSG test takes between 10 and 30 minutes. The doctor inserts a speculum into the vagina (like when you have a Pap smear) and then places a thin plastic tube into the cervix, which leads to the uterus and fallopian tubes. A special dye is injected through the plastic tube. The dye should fill the uterus and fallopian tubes and spill out of each fallopian tube. X-rays are then taken, with which the doctor can evaluate the uterus and fallopian tubes.

 

Is the HSG procedure painful?

Many women feel some cramping, especially when the dye is injected. Women who have a blocked fallopian tube may experience severe pain. Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen, can help relieve this pain or discomfort. Talk to your doctor about taking pain medication 30 to 60 minutes before the procedure to prevent or reduce pain during the test. Many women don't have pain after HSG, but you may experience cramping or pain after the procedure, so it's a good idea to have someone drive you home.

 

What are the risks or possible side effects of a hysterosalpingogram?

Risks of HSG include:

  • Pain or discomfort
  • Contamination
  • Vaginal spotting or bleeding

Contact your doctor if you develop:

→ Fever

→ Heavy bleeding

→ Intense pain in the lower abdomen

→ Foul-smelling discharge

 

IMPORTANT NOTE:

In rare cases, a woman may be allergic to the iodine contrast agent used in an HSG. Patients with documented allergies to iodine, intravenous contrast dyes, or shellfish should inform the physician prior to the procedure.

 

How should I prepare for hysterosalpingography?

The test should be scheduled after your period ends but before ovulation, usually between days 6 and 10 of the menstrual cycle. To calculate the days of your cycle, count day 1 as the day your period starts. Antibiotics, prescribed by your referring doctor, are given prophylactically to prevent infection and must be taken the day before, the day of the test and the day after.

 

NEED MORE INFORMATION?

Call (+30) 2310 277 032 or visit the Frequently Asked Questions

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FREQUENT QUESTIONS

The association of IVF drugs with cancer risk is a major concern for women enrolled in these programs. But the plethora of bibliographic reports collected from credible scientific studies and published in reputable medical journals worldwide are reassuring and do not confirm this concern.

Of course not. In about a third of cases, infertility is due to the woman (female factor), while in a third of cases, it is due to the man (male factor). The remaining one-third is due to both (both men and women) or even to unknown factors.

The quantity and quality of a man's sperm can be affected by his health and lifestyle. Some factors that can reduce the quantity and / or quality of sperm are:

  • the alcohol
  • drugs
  • environmental toxins, including pesticides and lead
  • smoking
  • health problems
  • medicines
  • radiotherapy and chemotherapy
  • the age

Success rates vary at each IVF Center. Very important factors are also the age of the woman, the levels of her hormones and of course the sperm of the husband. Rates generally range from 45% or slightly higher for women up to 35 years old.

Infertility is defined as the failure to conceive after one year (or 6 months, if it is a woman over 35) with normal, regular sexual intercourse. In other words, when a year passes without the woman becoming pregnant, the couple should consult their doctor to determine the cause of the pregnancy and then treat it. We must all, however, be aware and not forget that the age factor is the most critical for female fertility and that the individualized approach of each couple is the "golden key" that solves the problem.

The number of treatment cycles a woman can undergo is not specified. It is certain that in our country there are high level obstetricians-gynecologists and organized infertility treatment centers, which offer impeccable medical services at this level. If there are correct indications (eg ovaries that respond to stimulation therapy, good quality endometrium, etc.) the success rate -especially with the use of newer techniques and biotechnological drugs, which show increased bioactivity compared to conventional drugs from urine- totals approximately 65%-70% after 4 cycles of treatment.

At the Center for Reproductive Medicine of Dr. Traianos we offer egg / sperm cryopreservation services for those who have a personal or medical reason and need this service. We use the most modern vitrification technique in the freezing of sperm and eggs.

The collection of eggs takes 10-15 minutes, it is not painful, it is done under intoxication and after the end of the process you return to your activities.

In general, experts agree that the fact that a couple has already had a child can be considered evidence that there is no infertility problem in the first place. It is like a small test that has been done and proves that they "succeeded" at least once. On the other hand, we need to know that in the meantime things may have changed and a problem may have arisen (eg the man may have had some inflammation that affects the quality of his sperm or has mediated something that affects female fertility: an inflammation, a gynecological surgery, an abortion, etc.). In any case, if a reasonable period of time (one year) passes and a couple can not achieve a pregnancy, then he should with the help of his doctor investigate if there has been a problem that causes infertility.