MWS is about ‘women stuff’ and one such ‘stuff’ is that of health issues including issues women have with their uterus or fibroids. This is a guest post by Marymoo* who underwent a hysterosalpingogram (HSG) and offered to share her tale with all readers. It might help someone who is searching for information on it.
A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is a long word and a medical procedure you hope never to go through! Unfortunately, it is the best way to check if the ol’ tubing inside is clear or whether you have any fibroids or stuff that should not be there.
What is the hysterosalpingogram (HSG)?
The HSG is essentially an X-ray of your Fallopian tubes and uterus to ensure everything is clear and working as they should, and is also a test for female fertility potential. If the doctor suspects that a Fallopian tube may be blocked, or if they suspect fibroids they may prescribe this produce. For those who have been prescribed it, here’s a first hand account of what to expect and how I survived the HSG! 🙂
My HSG Experience
Your HSG will be done by the X-ray department or diagnostic imaging unit. You’ll be asked to change into a surgical gown, remove your clothing on your lower half (but keep your upper half clothing on!) and led into an X-ray room with a bed. You’ll be asked to lie down with your legs propped up. Like all gynecological examinations, be prepared to have doctors working on your nether regions!
Remind your doctor to be gentle! I did and he was really quite nice, pausing often to check if I was okay. Pleasant nurses make a huge difference too and some even offer to hold your hand if it is your first time.
A speculum will be inserted after swabbing you down, similar to a Pap smear, which does hurt quite a bit! *ouch* What is most disconcerting is to hear the doctor screwing it into place so it doesn’t move! That doesn’t hurt though.
Once that is in, a small thin rubber tube is inserted into the cervix so a contrast dye can be inserted through the tube to show up on the X-ray. The doctor removes the speculum at this stage and it is actually a lot more comfortable then.
The dye goes in with quite a bit of discomfort. Think monthly period cramps and it is similar – sometimes worse, sometimes better depending on your pain threshold. You may be then asked to turn on your right or left for different X-ray positions and the doctor may inject in more dye to improve the contrast or to flush out any minor blockages they see. Usually that comes with stronger cramps and can be pretty uncomfortable or painful even. Try taking your mind off by watching the X-rays on the screen. It does look rather interesting!
The procedure is over within 15 to 20 minutes. It may take longer if you have blocked tubes. The doctor will remove the tube (no more pain) and you’ll be asked to lie down on the table for a while. You will then be asked to sit in a waiting area for observation before you are allowed to leave. After the procedure, you will still continue to experience some cramping and spotting which is apparently normal. The nurses may give you a panty liner or sanitary napkin for the dye and any spotting. However, if you have heavy bleeding or bad cramps, do go back to see your doctor.
Pain will actually vary from woman to woman but most people will feel that cramping sensation. You will survive to tell the tale! So if you have been recommended to do the HSG test, remember to breathe deeply and try to focus on something else while it is being done. I had a little boy crying and screaming in the next room as he came out from his anaesthethia which provided a pretty good distraction in a warped way! 😛
If you have a similar story to share or if you have undergone the HSG and want to tell us how it went for you, please do share in the comments. Or if you have a women’s health issue you’d like to share with readers, please feel free to drop me an email and we’ll take it from there 🙂
This is a guest post by Marymoo* who decided to share her personal experience with a hysterosalpingogram (HSG) with readers so we are all better informed.
* names changed to protect privacy