Skip to main content

Health Encyclopedia

Search the Health Encyclopedia

Hysterosalpingography

Definition

Hysterosalpingography is a special x-ray using dye to look at the womb (uterus) and fallopian tubes.

Alternative Names

HSG; Uterosalpingography; Hysterogram; Uterotubography; Infertility - hysterosalpingography; Blocked fallopian tubes - hysterosalpingography

How the Test is Performed

This test is done in a radiology department. You will lie on a table beneath an x-ray machine. You will place your feet in stirrups, like you do during a pelvic exam. A tool called a speculum is placed into the vagina.

After the cervix is cleaned, the health care provider places a thin tube (catheter) through the cervix. Dye, called contrast, flows through this tube, filling the womb and fallopian tubes. X-rays are taken. The dye makes these areas easier to see on x-rays.

How to Prepare for the Test

Your provider may give you antibiotics to take before and after the test. This helps prevent infections. You may also be given medicines to take the day of the procedure to help you relax.

The best time for this test is about 7 or 8 days after the bleeding from your menstrual period has stopped. Doing it at this time also reduces the risk for infection, and ensures that you are not pregnant.

Tell your provider if you have had an allergic reaction to contrast dye before.

You can eat and drink normally before the test.

How the Test will Feel

You may have some discomfort when the speculum is inserted into the vagina. This is similar to a pelvic exam with a Pap test.

Some women have cramps during or after the test, like those you may get during your period.

You may have some pain if the dye leaks out of the tubes, or if the tubes are blocked.

Why the Test is Performed

This test is done to check for blockages in your fallopian tubes or other problems in the womb and tubes. It is often done as part of an infertility exam. It may also be done after you have your tubes tied to confirm that the tubes are fully blocked after you have had a hysteroscopic tubal occlusion procedure to prevent pregnancy.

Normal Results

A normal result means everything looks normal. There are no defects.

Note: Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.

What Abnormal Results Mean

Abnormal results may be due to:

  • Developmental disorders of the structures of the uterus or fallopian tubes
  • Scar tissue (adhesions) in the uterus or tubes
  • Blockage of the fallopian tubes
  • Presence of foreign bodies
  • Tumors or polyps in the uterus

Risks

Risks may include:

  • Allergic reaction to the contrast
  • Endometrial infection (endometritis)
  • Fallopian tube infection (salpingitis)
  • Perforation of (poking a hole through) the uterus

Considerations

This test should not be performed if you have pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) or have unexplained vaginal bleeding.

After the test, tell your provider right away if you have any signs or symptoms of infection. These include foul-smelling vaginal discharge, pain, or fever.

References

Broekmans FJ, Fauser BCJM. Female infertility. In: Jameson JL, De Groot LJ, de Kretser DM, et al, eds. Endocrinology: Adult and Pediatric. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 132.

Lobo RA. Infertility. In: Lentz GM, Lobo RA, Gershenson DM, Katz VL, eds. Comprehensive Gynecology. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Mosby; 2012:chap 41.

Review Date:4/5/2016
Reviewed By:Irina Burd, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Gynecology and Obstetrics at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997-A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

adam.com

The Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) and this website do not claim the information on, or referred to by, this site is error free. This site may include links to websites of other government agencies or private groups. Our Agency and this website do not control such sites and are not responsible for their content. Reference to or links to any other group, product, service, or information does not mean our Agency or this website approves of that group, product, service, or information.

Additionally, while health information provided through this website may be a valuable resource for the public, it is not designed to offer medical advice. Talk with your doctor about medical care questions you may have.

Health
Outcome Data

No data available for this condition/procedure.

Read More

Adhesion *

Ectopic pregnancy


* Has Related Health Outcome Information

Images

Health Encyclopedia

More Features

We Appreciate Your Feedback!
1. Did you find this information useful?
         Yes
         No
2. Would you recommend this website to family and friends?
         Yes
         No