A specialised operating telescope can be used to remove polyps or small fibroids from within the uterus (womb). Some women may already know that they have polyps or small fibroids because they have previously had diagnostic hysteroscopy (telescopic camera into the uterus) or an ultrasound scan.
A polyp is a small lump of tissue that can grow on the lining of the uterus and a fibroid is a benign (non-cancerous) growth. They can contribute to heavy vaginal bleeding, irregular bleeding and fertility problems.
What are the benefits of Local Anaesthetic?
Our aim is to avoid the use of a general anaesthetic (fully asleep) so that your recovery is faster and the prcedure takes less time.
Risks of Polyp or Fibroid Removal
You may experience some pelvic discomfort like period cramps but you will be able to have some pain relief and local anaesthesia which will minimise the discomfort.
Some women feel a little lightheaded or faint during/after the procedure but this is usually short-lived.
There is a small risk of infection.
A small risk of perforation (small hole in the wall of the uterus) but this is very rare (1 in 1000 women).
How effective is this treatment?
From previous experience we have been able to remove polyps and small fibroids with a 95% success rate.
Find out more about Polyp or Fibroid Removal Under Local Anaesthetic:
You will be seen by the healthcare professional performing the procedure who will talk through the risks and intended benefits of the procedure. You can then sign a consent form to inform us that you agree to proceed.
You will be prescribed some pain relief and anti-sickness medication to help you during the procedure.
The necessary checks and paperwork will be completed before and during the procedure by one of the nursing staff. There will be at least two nursing staff and the person carrying out the procedure in the treatment room with you. One of these nurses is there to stay with you throughout your time in the treatment room.
You will be given some time and space to remove the bottom half of your clothing and be given a sheet or gown to cover you. We will then help you to make yourself comfortable on the examination couch.
As the procedure starts, a speculum will be inserted into the vagina (as used during a smear test).
You will then be given some local anaesthetic into the cervix (neck of the uterus) to allow passage of the telescopic camera into the uterus.
The uterus is filled with saline (salt water solution) to allow direct examination of the lining of the uterus.
At this stage you may experience some mild to moderate period-type discomfort. If it is too uncomfortable for you to bear, we encourage you tell the staff so that the procedure can be stopped.
The device to remove the polyp is then passed down the telescope into your uterus and held against the polyp or fibroid to remove it. This may take a few seconds or minutes depending on the size and nature of polyp/fibroid.
At the end of the procedure you will be observed in the Unit until we are happy for you to go home.
You should continue to take regular pain relief for the next 24-48 hours.
What can I do to prepare?
Please eat and drink normally before your procedure but avoid eating a heavy meal. A light meal and good hydration will make you less likely to feel light headed during the procedure. Prior to the procedure you will be prescribed some pain relief and anti-sickness medications.
Please use reliable contraception in the month before this procedure if you are in the reproductive age group. We cannot proceed if you have had unprotected intercourse even if a pregnancy test on the day is negative.
Please take your usual medications unless you are taking blood thinning medication such as Clopidogrel or Warfarin. You will be given instructions on how and when to stop taking this by the doctor when you are referred to us. You will be given individual instructions. Please contact us at the clinic (see number below) as soon as possible if you are due to attend but have not stopped your blood thinning medication or your instructions are unclear.
Going home and afterwards:
You may experience some continued period-type cramping and discomfort shortly after the procedure.
Some patients can feel lightheaded but this is usually short-lived.
You are likely to experience some vaginal discharge that may be red, pinkish, orange/brown in colour. This may be fairly heavy initially and should become lighter and may last for up to 3-4 weeks.
You should not use tampons during this time but may use sanitary towels.
If you experience worsening pelvic pain and/or offensive discharge, which may be greenish in colour, and/or a raised temperature, please get in touch with your GP as these symptoms may be signs of an infection and require some antibiotics.
Approximately 1 in 200 women will develop infection following this procedure.
Polyp or Fibroid Removal - Specialists
Dr Mamta Pathak
Dr Mamta specialises in office Gynaecology consultations and procedures, having helped to establish and develop the office Gynaecology department in the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals.
Office Gynaecological procedures have made a significant clinical impact by removing the need for general anaesthesia, thereby allowing for a quick recovery following treatment.