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Hysteroscopic Sterilization

AMBULATORY CARE:

Hysteroscopic sterilization

is a procedure to block your fallopian tubes to prevent pregnancy. Small coils made of nickel or titanium are guided into your fallopian tubes. Scar tissue builds up around the coils. The scar tissue prevents sperm from reaching an egg. The coils will never be removed from your fallopian tubes. This is a permanent form of birth control. You will need to be sure you will not ever want to become pregnant before you have this procedure.

How to prepare for this procedure:

  • You will be given local anesthesia as a shot of medicine put into your cervix. It is used to numb the area and dull the pain. You may still feel pressure or pushing during the procedure. Tell your healthcare provider if you have ever had an allergic reaction to local anesthesia.
  • Tell your healthcare provider if you are allergic to nickel or any other metals.

What will happen during this procedure:

  • You will be placed on a table with your knees bent and feet in stirrups. A hysteroscope will be inserted into your uterus through your vagina and cervix. A camera at the end of the scope will show the inside of your uterus on a monitor. Saline solution will be inserted through the scope. This solution makes your uterus larger and allows your healthcare provider to see your fallopian tubes better.
  • When the opening of your fallopian tube is seen, a thin wire will be put through the scope. A coil will be attached to the wire. The wire will be inserted into the opening of your fallopian tube. The coil will then be released into the tube. Once released, the coil will expand and attach to your tube wall. After the coil has been placed inside your fallopian tube, the wire and scope will be removed. The same procedure will then be done for your other fallopian tube.

What will happen after this procedure:

It will take at least 3 months after your procedure for your tubes to be completely blocked. You may still get pregnant during that time. You will need to use a form of birth control until your healthcare provider says the blockage is complete.

Risks of this procedure:

  • You may have an allergic response to the metal coil used for your procedure. After your procedure, you may have nausea, dizziness, or feel faint. You may have abnormal vaginal bleeding or spotting. You may also have cramping or pain in your abdomen and lower back. Your uterus or fallopian tubes may get a tear from your procedure. You may get blood clots. The coil may move out of place. The coil may move into another area of your body, such as your uterus.
  • Even after 3 months, your tubes may not be blocked. You may need to have another procedure or surgery to prevent pregnancy permanently.

Seek care immediately if:

  • Your legs are swollen, warm, and painful.
  • You have very bad stomach or pelvic pain.
  • You have large amounts of vaginal bleeding and it is not time for your monthly period.

Contact your healthcare provider or gynecologist if:

  • You feel dizzy or you have fainted.
  • You think or know that you have become pregnant.
  • You have a fever.
  • You have pain in your lower back, legs, hips, or thighs.
  • You have foul-smelling vaginal discharge.
  • You have nausea and are vomiting.
  • You have questions about your condition or care.

Medicines:

  • Acetaminophen decreases pain and fever. It is available without a doctor's order. Ask how much to take and how often to take it. Follow directions. Read the labels of all other medicines you are using to see if they also contain acetaminophen, or ask your doctor or pharmacist. Acetaminophen can cause liver damage if not taken correctly. Do not use more than 4 grams (4,000 milligrams) total of acetaminophen in one day.
  • NSAIDs help decrease swelling and pain or fever. This medicine is available with or without a doctor's order. NSAIDs can cause stomach bleeding or kidney problems in certain people. If you take blood thinner medicine, always ask your healthcare provider if NSAIDs are safe for you. Always read the medicine label and follow directions.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Activity:

You may be able to return to your daily activities on the day of your procedure. Ask when you can return to work, exercise, or other activities.

Birth control:

It will take at least 3 months for your tubes to be completely blocked. You will need to use a form of birth control during this time to prevent pregnancy. Talk to your healthcare provider or gynecologist about what kind of birth control is best for you.

Prevent blood clots:

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a condition that causes blood clots to form inside your veins. You may be at an increased risk for DVT after your procedure. Ask your healthcare provider or gynecologist for more information about how to prevent DVT.

Follow up with your healthcare provider or gynecologist as directed:

You will need to see your healthcare provider or gynecologist a few months after your procedure. You may need a hysterosalpingogram, ultrasound, or pelvic x-ray. These tests are done to check your tubes and make sure they are completely blocked. Your healthcare provider may also check if the coil inside each tube is in the right place. Ask for more information about these tests. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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