Fertility testing can often be a daunting procedure. Many couples stuggling with fertility issues have to undergo dozens of tests in order to find out what is at the bottom of their infertility.

A hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is a very common fertility test that most women struggling with infertility will undergo. The hysterosalpingogram can help to pinpoint specific fertility problems and may help you to decide on an appropriate treatment.

What is a Hysterosalpingogram?

A hysterosalpingogram is a fertility test used to detect uterine and fallopian health. The HSG test uses x-ray technology to create a picture of the uterus and fallopian tubes.

When you undergo an HSG test, colored dye is injected into your uterus. This dye then travels up through the fallopian tubes and out into the abdominal cavity. The HSG allows your health care provider to determine if there is any damage to your reproductive system.

What Can a Hysterosalpigogram Detect?

Generally, the HSG fertility test is used to detect abnormalities in your uterus or fallopian tubes. The HSG dye will indicate any damage or blockages in your fallopian tubes.

The dye will also highlight the shape of your uterus. However, an HSG test can sometimes also indicate:

  • uterine fibroids
  • uterine polyps
  • adhesions or scar tissue
  • endometriosis

Who Needs a Hysterosalpingogram?

An HSG test is offered to every woman seeking fertility treatment at a fertility clinic. The HSG test helps to determine overall uterine health and is an excellent way of pinpointing fertility difficulties. Every woman seeking help in becoming pregnant should have an HSG exam.

Hysterosalpingogram and Fertility

Besides being able to detect uterine and tubal abnormalities, the HSG test has also been shown to increase pregnancy rates in some women. The HSG test sometimes helps to clear fallopian tubes of debris or blockages. This can enable some women with fertility issues to become pregnant.

The Hysterosalpingogram Procedure

The HSG procedure is typically performed in the radiology department of you local hospital. It is an outpatient procedure, which means that you will be able to go home immediately following the test. The procedure itself is relatively quick - it only takes about five minutes to actually perform - however, you may be asked to answer some questions before the HSG test begins. The HSG procedure is performed as follows:

  • You lie on an examination table and bring your knees up to your chest. You allow your knees to fall outwards, towards the table. A speculum is placed in your vagina, in order to expose your cervix
  • A thin catheter is inserted through your cervix and into your uterus
  • Dye is slowly released through the catheter into your uterine cavity
  • X-rays are taken as the dye flows into the fallopian tubes and spills out into the abdominal cavity
  • You will be asked to turn on to your side, so that further x-rays can be taken
  • Table of Contents
    1. Who needs an HSG?
    2. What's after the HSG
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