What is an endometrial biopsy?
- Used to treat endometrial anomalies
- Endometrial biopsy has varied pain levels
- Endometrial biopsy procedure
- Post-endometrial biopsy procedure
- The results of endometrial biopsy
If you are having problems with your uterus, an endometrial biopsy can be done to check its integrity. You can have your doctor check for any anomalies and problems that could be causing several effects on your body. The best part about an endometrial biopsy is that it will only take a few minutes of your time.
The endometrial biopsy uses a small tissue from the lining of your uterus, which is called the endometrium. It is first carefully removed and is then placed under the microscope for examination. The tissue is then examined for any abnormalities or cancer cells.
Used To Treat Endometrial Anomalies
An endometrial biopsy can be done to find out the causes of abnormal or heavy bleeding. It’s the most common test done to see if you have endometrial cancer. Another reason you might want to get an endometrial biopsy is due to bleeding even after menopause and to check your hormone levels. However, while it is a simple procedure, you will need to find an expert with experience to perform the test.
Biopsy results will show cell changes directly related to hormone levels and abnormal tissue. These changes can lead to the abnormal bleeding you experience. It could also be due to uterine infections or endometritis. Endometritis is a condition where the endometrium lining is inflamed due to infection.
The biopsy also helps to check on cancer cells, cell abnormalities, and the effects of hormonal therapy. Endometrial cancer is the most common cancer of the female reproductive organs.
Endometrial Biopsy Has Varied Pain Levels
Endometrial biopsies are painful. Patients should be informed of this prior to the procedure. There are drugs that patients can take to reduce the pain. To avoid complications, ask for advice from your doctor before proceeding.
Endometrial Biopsy Procedure
This procedure is normally done in a doctor’s office. Before the procedure starts, your bladder must be empty. You will be asked to fully undress and put on a hospital gown. You will be asked to lie down on the examination table and place your feet on the support.
The procedure begins with an insertion of a speculum into your vagina. The speculum pushes your vaginal walls to reveal the cervix. The antiseptic solution will then be applied to the cervix to clean it. The area may be numbed with an injection or numbing spray.
Forceps will then be used to hold the cervix steady. Take note that cramping may be felt when forceps are used. The uterine sound is then inserted through the cervical opening to find the length of the uterus and the location of the biopsy.
A catheter, with a small tube inside of it, will be inserted into the cervical opening and into the uterus. The inner tube will be maneuvered in order to create suction at the end of the catheter. It will then be rotated gently while the tip collects small pieces of endometrial tissue. The amount and location of the tissue removed depend on the reason for the biopsy, which your doctor will inform you of prior to the procedure. After the sample is taken, the rest of the devices will be removed and the sample will be sent to the lab for analysis.
Post-Endometrial Biopsy Procedure
After the procedure, you will need to rest before going home. If sedatives are used, it is ideal to bring along someone who can drive you home. Prepare to experience cramping, spotting, and bleeding over the next few days. Using a sanitary pad after the procedure is recommended if you do experience some bleeding. If you prefer to take some pain medication, be sure to only use the ones recommended by your doctor as some medications can aggravate bleeding.
Avoid using tampons and from engaging in sexual activity for at least 3 days after an endometrial biopsy. Your doctor may also recommend a change in lifestyle in the meantime to avoid complications and infections. Lastly, take note that your doctor may also ask you to return for further treatment and care.
Visit your doctor as soon as possible if you experience the following:
- Excessive bleeding or bleeding longer than 2 days after
- Foul-smelling drainage from your vagina
- Fever and chills
- Severe lower belly pain
The Results of Endometrial Biopsy
Once the procedure is completed, the lab will test the sample for any abnormalities. The results are considered abnormal when a benign, non-cancerous growth is present. The endometrium is also abnormal when it’s thicker or if you have endometrial hyperplasia. Any cancer cells in the endometrium are also considered abnormal.
If you’re heading to your hospital or women’s health center, you can have your biopsy done to check the integrity of your endometrium. If you’ve experienced any of the symptoms discussed above, approach your trusted doctor today for the proper advice.