Endometrial Ablation is normally performed as an outpatient procedure. Depending on which ablation you are having will determine whether you require a local or general anaesthetic. You may also be given medication beforehand to minimise cramping during and after the procedure.
The procedure usually takes about half an hour. A special telescope is inserted into the womb to allow the surgeon to look at the womb which is then inflated so the surgeon can see it clearly.
The most commonly used techniques are:
Both destroy the lining of the womb which stops the bleeding. Other methods include freezing, microwave or laser techniques.
You can usually return home the same day following this procedure, but should have someone to drive you home. You may experience some vaginal bleeding for a few days and a watery discharge for a few weeks afterwards. Normal over the counter pain relief should help with any discomfort. You should be able to return to your normal activities about a week after your procedure.
Before you proceed to an ablation your doctor must rule out abnormal uterine conditions for example fibroids, and your smear test and biopsy must also be normal. If you still want to have children then an endometrial ablation is not an option since the uterine lining is destroyed during the procedure.
Since there is a chance pregnancy could occur contraception or sterilisation should be used after an endometrial ablation. You should not have an endometrial ablation if you still want to have children. Pregnancies after ablation can be dangerous for both foetus and mother.
An endometrial ablation is a safe and routine procedure and complications are rare. It is possible that inflammation of the lining of the womb or an infection could occur. In more rare cases damage to your womb or bowel can occur. You should discuss any concerns with your surgeon prior to the procedure.
In most cases the operation is very successful, with patients experiencing no bleeding or only light bleeds.
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