Hysteroscopy With Dilation and Curettage: What to Expect at Home

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Your Recovery

For a hysteroscopy, your doctor guides a lighted tube through your cervix and into your uterus. This helps the doctor see inside your uterus.

For a dilation and curettage (D&C), your doctor uses a curved tool, called a curette, to gently scrape tissue from your uterus.

After these procedures, you are likely to have a backache or cramps similar to menstrual cramps. Expect to pass small clots of blood from your vagina for the first few days. You may have light vaginal bleeding for several weeks after the D&C.

If the doctor filled your uterus with air, you may have gas pains or your belly may feel full. You may also have shoulder pain. These symptoms should go away in 1 to 2 days.

You will probably be able to go back to most of your normal activities in 1 or 2 days.

This care sheet gives you a general idea about how long it will take for you to recover. But each person recovers at a different pace. Follow the steps below to get better as quickly as possible.

How can you care for yourself at home?

Activity

  • Rest when you feel tired.
  • Most women are able to return to work the day after the procedure.
  • Wear sanitary pads if needed. Do not douche or use tampons for 2 weeks or until your doctor says it is okay.
  • Ask your doctor when it is okay for you to have sex.
  • If you could become pregnant, talk about birth control with your doctor. Do not try to become pregnant until your doctor says it is okay.

Diet

  • You can eat your normal diet. If your stomach is upset, try bland, low-fat foods like plain rice, broiled chicken, toast, and yogurt.
  • Drink plenty of fluids (unless your doctor tells you not to).

Medicines

  • Your doctor will tell you if and when you can restart your medicines. He or she will also give you instructions about taking any new medicines.
  • If you take aspirin or some other blood thinner, be sure to talk to your doctor. He or she will tell you if you should stop taking these medicines before your procedure. Make sure that you understand exactly what your doctor wants you to do.
  • Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
    • If the doctor gave you a prescription medicine for pain, take it as prescribed.
    • If you are not taking a prescription pain medicine, ask your doctor if you can take an over-the-counter medicine.
  • If your doctor prescribed antibiotics, take them as directed. Do not stop taking them just because you feel better. You need to take the full course of antibiotics.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

When should you call for help?

Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:

  • You passed out (lost consciousness).
  • You have severe trouble breathing.
  • You have sudden chest pain and shortness of breath, or you cough up blood.
  • You have sudden, severe pain in your belly.

Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:

  • You have severe vaginal bleeding. This means that you are soaking through your usual pads or tampons every hour for 2 or more hours.
  • You pass blood clots that are larger than a golf ball.
  • You have a vaginal discharge that smells bad.
  • You are sick to your stomach or cannot keep fluids down.
  • You have pain that does not get better after you take pain medicine.
  • You have a fever over 38°C (100.4°F).
  • You have trouble passing urine or stool, especially if you have pain or swelling in your lower belly.
  • You have pain, discomfort, or bleeding with sex.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:

  • You do not get better as expected.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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