Hysterosalpingogram is an X-ray test that looks at the inside of the uterus and fallopian tubes and the area around them. It often is done for women who are having a hard time becoming pregnant (infertile).
During a hysterosalpingogram, a dye (contrast material) is put through a thin tube that is put through the vagina and into the uterus. Because the uterus and the fallopian tubes are hooked together, the dye will flow into the fallopian tubes. Pictures are taken using a steady beam of X-ray (fluoroscopy) as the dye passes through the uterus and fallopian tubes. The pictures can show problems such as an injury or abnormal structure of the uterus or fallopian tubes, or a blockage that would prevent an egg moving through a fallopian tube to the uterus. A blockage also could prevent sperm from moving into a fallopian tube and joining (fertilizing) an egg. A hysterosalpingogram also may find problems on the inside of the uterus that prevents a fertilized egg from attaching (implanting) to the uterine wall.
Fallopian Tube Recanalization
Fallopian tube recanalization is the most common cause of female infertility is a blockage of the fallopian tube through which eggs pass from the ovary to the uterus. Occasionally, these tubes become plugged or narrowed, preventing successful pregnancy.
Interventional radiologists can diagnose and treat a blockage in the fallopian tubes with a non-surgical procedure known as Selective Salpingography or Fallopian Tube Recanalization (FTRC). In the procedure, which does not require an incision, a catheter is placed into the uterus. A contrast agent, or dye, is injected through the catheter, and an X-ray image of the uterine cavity is obtained. When a blockage of the fallopian tube to the uterus is identified, another catheter is threaded into the fallopian tube to open the blockage. Blockages in the fallopian tube close to the ovary still need to be treated with surgery or in vitro fertilization (IVF).
Obstetrical Ultrasound imaging, also called ultrasound scanning or sonography, involves exposing part of the body to high-frequency sound waves to produce pictures of the inside of the body. Ultrasound exams do not use ionizing radiation (as used in x-rays). Because ultrasound images are captured in real-time, they can show the structure and movement of the body’s internal organs, as well as blood flowing through blood vessels.
Obstetrical ultrasound provides pictures of an embryo or fetus within a woman’s uterus, as well as the mother’s uterus and ovaries.
A Doppler ultrasound study may be part of an obstetrical ultrasound examination. Doppler ultrasound is a special ultrasound technique that evaluates blood flow through a blood vessel, including the body’s major arteries and veins in the abdomen, arms, legs and neck.
During an obstetrical ultrasound many things will be established about the fetus including an age estimate, position of the fetus and placenta, determine if there are multiple pregnancies, diagnose congenital abnormalities, and may evaluate blood flow in the umbilical cord or may in some cases assess blood flow in the fetus or placenta.