Sometimes a D&C is done to stop the bleeding, rather than to diagnose why you are bleeding. This is sometimes done after a miscarriage or after a delivery when all of the placenta did not come out like it was supposed to.
A D&C is not advised if you have:
Infection of the uterus
Infection of the fallopian tubes
Complications are rare, but no procedure is completely free of risk. If you are planning to have a D&C, your doctor will review a list of possible complications which may include:
Complications related to the anesthetic
Injury to the cervix
Scarring of endometrium
Infection of the uterus or fallopian tubes
Uterine perforation (hole in the uterus)
Damage to other organs in the abdomen
In case of significant injury or bleeding, possible need to open the abdomen and have the uterine wound stitched closed
anesthesia may be used. With general anesthesia, you will be asleep. Local anesthesia will numb the area, but you will be awake.
Description of Procedure
A pelvic exam will be done to find out the size and location of your uterus. The vagina and cervix will be cleaned with an antiseptic solution. A speculum will be placed in your vagina. An instrument called a cervical dilator is placed into the cervical canal. Once the cervical canal is slightly open, a scoop-shaped instrument, called a curette, will be inserted into the uterus. It will be used to scrape the uterine lining and remove tissue through the vagina. After sampling the endometrium, the instrument will be removed from the cervix.
Immediately After Procedure
The tissue is taken to a lab for examination.
How Long Will It Take?
About 10 minutes
Will It Hurt?
General anesthesia will prevent pain during the D&C. With local anesthetic, most report feeling some cramping and back pain. It may last for a day after the procedure. Over-the-counter pain medicines or a mild prescription drug are all that is usually needed to relieve minor discomfort.
At the Care Center
After the procedure, you will be taken to the recovery area. After a short period of time, you can leave.
Have someone assist you in getting home.
When you return home, do the following to help ensure a smooth recovery:
Be sure to follow your doctor's
Ask your doctor when you will be able to return to work. Also, do not drive until your doctor tells you that it is safe.
There may be some nausea from the anesthesia.
Mild uterine cramping may be experienced. The doctor may give pain medicine for this discomfort.
It is not uncommon to experience vaginal bleeding and discharge for some time.
Most commonly, normal activity may be started after a few days.
Refrain from placing anything inside your vagina until instructed by your doctor. The cervix has been opened, and this may make it easier for you to get an infection in your uterus.
Your next menstrual cycle may not be regular. It may be late or early.
It generally takes a few days for your doctor to receive the lab report. At your follow-up visit, your doctor will make recommendations for any additional treatment.
Call Your Doctor
After arriving home, contact your doctor if any of the following occurs:
Signs of infection, including fever and chills, increasing pain, or foul-smelling vaginal discharge
Nausea or vomiting that does not stop
Vaginal bleeding that is saturating more than one sanitary pad per hour
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a