This leaflet is to help you understand more about sonohysterography.

What is sonohysterography?

It is a special kind of ultrasound exam where a salt-water solution (saline) is injected into the uterine cavity to outline the interior of the cavity and rule out local lesions.

Why should I undergo this exam?

Sonohysterography has a high accuracy to detect polyps and submucosal leiomyomas/fibroids, which are common causes of abnormal uterine bleeding (AUB).

These benign uterine lesions can be surgically removed.

How is sonohysterography performed?

This exam is performed with an ultrasound vaginal probe and lasts a few minutes. It starts like a Papsmear with insertion of an instrument called a speculum into the vagina to make the cervix visible. The vagina and cervix are cleaned with an antiseptic solution. A small tube with a balloon at the end is placed in the cervical canal through which fluid (normal saline) is slowly instilled into the uterus. An ultrasound probe is placed into the vagina before the fluid is instilled so that the cavity of the uterus can be observed as it fills with fluid and outline any unusual growths such as polyps or fibroids within the cavity.

When should I undergo this exam?

This exam is usually performed in the first phase of menstrual cycle, before ovulation occurs.

Is the exam painful?

It is usually a painless exam, although it can cause some mild discomfort during the instillation of saline into the uterus.

What should I expect from the results of the exam?

This exam is usually a complementary method to conventional transvaginal ultrasound.

If you have a polyp or submucosal leiomyoma, this exam will allow a better evaluation (number, size, and location of the lesion) and help in the planning for surgery if removal of the lesion is recommended. 

The exam can also be normal, that is, can rule out the presence of local lesions within the uterine cavity, which means that other causes for your symptom of abnormal uterine bleeding should be sought.


Last updated March 2024