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Endometrial Biopsy Information

From the GYN Diagnosis Articles List

Endometrial Biopsy 101What can I expect from an endometrial biopsy?

An endometrial biopsy is a way for the doctor to take a small sampling of the lining of your uterus (endometrium). The sample is then observed under a microscope for abnormal cells. An endometrial biopsy is done to check for endometrial cancer or determine the cause of abnormal uterine bleeding, especially after menopause.

To gain access to your endometrium, the doctor will need to insert an instrument through your cervix. He or she may prescribe Cytotec to open your cervix. You may experience some bleeding as a result; it may be heavy if excessive bleeding is already a factor in your endometrial problems.

Your doctor may give you painkillers and a mild sedative as well if your cervix is particularly tight or blocked. Your cervix could be blocked by swelling caused by an infection, the presence of fluid buildup, or other conditions. Sometimes, a completely blocked cervix prevents an endometrial biopsy, and a dilation and curettage (D&C) will become necessary. A D&C involves forcing the cervix open, usually under sedation or general anesthesia, and scraping the lining of the uterus with a special instrument. Analyzing the results of a D&C, which involves the entire uterine lining, provides an even more accurate diagnosis than a biopsy, which is just a spot taken from the endometrium.

Recovery from a biopsy is very quick, with some bleeding and soreness for a day or two afterwards. Recovery from a D&C may take a bit longer, depending on how well you come out of anesthesia and how much you bleed afterwards. Your doctor is likely to give you antibiotics after either procedure to ward off infection.

Members of HysterSisters report small discomforts during the short 10–15 minute procedure. Others report a tenderness in their uterus after the procedure. Some women feel dizzy or sick to their stomachs momentarily, but the feelings go away after the procedure.

The procedure generally causes some vaginal bleeding, so you will need to use a pad for the bleeding or spotting. Your vagina may also be sore for a few days. Your doctor should give you instructions after the biopsy that usually include:
  • No strenuous exercise or heavy lifting for one day after your biopsy
  • No sex, tampons, or douching until the spotting stops

Call your doctor's office or go to the emergency room if you experience fever or excessive bleeding (more than a typical period), bad pain, or malodorous vaginal discharge.

Your biopsy results will provide you and your doctor more information to help you make medical decisions for yourself.

This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support.

12-22-2005 - 11:42 AM


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