By David Kreiner MD
May 6th, 2013 at 8:40 pm
Fear can be an awesome motivator.
Unfortunately, when it leads to avoiding a vital medical test such as investigating the patency of fallopian tubes it can prevent a physician from discovering the cause of a couple’s infertility.
The hysterosalpingogram (HSG) is an x-ray of the fallopian tubes after radio-opaque contrast is injected transvaginally through the cervix. Contrast can be visualized filling the fallopian tubes and spilling through patent fallopian tubes into the pelvis.
The HSG is performed using a metal instrument clamped on the lip of the cervix while a tube is placed through the cervix and contrast injected into the uterine cavity under pressure. Patients have complained that this procedure is too painful for them to endure and either refuse to undergo the procedure or go for a surgical laparoscopy under general anesthesia.
Today, a new procedure, known as the Femvue, is available whereby a physician inserts a catheter similar to that used at insemination into the cervix. The physician observes by transvaginal ultrasound the flow of air bubbles through the tubes and into the pelvis. This can be accomplished in the office with typically minimal discomfort to the patient.
Sometimes, it may be difficult to get reliable results with Femvue in obese patients. In cases where the results of Femvue are abnormal, a traditional HSG may be done to confirm results.
With the Femvue, the fear of pain experienced by some patients from the HSG is no longer an obstacle to the infertility workup.
Femvue is currently being performed at Long Island IVF by Doctors Kreiner, Pena, and Zinger.
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If you have had an HSG, was it painful? If you’ve had Femvue, how did it go?
Have you avoided an HSG because of fear?