• What Is Endometrial Biopsy?
List of Medical Tests
|What Is Endometrial Biopsy?
An endometrial biopsy is a procedure that involves taking a sample of cells from the lining of the womb (endometrium). The sample is sent to a laboratory and checked under a microscope for signs of endometrial cancer (cancer of the womb). It does not require hospitalization and can be carried out a the doctor’s office. Endometrial biopsy is a blind procedure, which means the doctor cannot directly view the uterus. For this reason, occasionally it is accompanied by imaging studies such as transvaginal ultrasound or hysteroscopy.
Your doctor may order this test to find the cause of:
The patient lies on her back with her feet in stirrups. The doctor inserts a speculum into the vagina to keep it stretched open. The cervix is sprayed for 5 seconds with benzocaine anesthetic and cleaned with a povidone-iodine solution. Next it is clamped in place with an instrument called a tenaculum. A cervical dilator may be placed into the cervix so that it can be stretched opened. A small dilator is used first, followed by successively larger dilators. When the cervix is sufficiently dilated the doctor passes a small hollow plastic tube (catheter) through it and into the uterine (womb) cavity. Using suction, a small amount of endometrium tissue is removed through the tube. The suctioning takes about a minute. It may be slightly uncomfortable and cause some menstrual-like cramps. Some physicians like to take 2 samples of tissue. When completed, the tenaculum is gently removed. Pressure with cotton swabs may be applied to the cervix if there is some bleeding. Finally, the speculum is removed. The tissue samples are then sent to a lab for testing by a pathologist.
How Should I Prepare For The Test?
There are no special instructions in preparing for this biopsy. You may want to take a painkiller like Tylenol or ibuprofen an hour before the procedure to reduce cramping.
Abnormal Test Result
Women with the following conditions should not undergo endometrial biopsy:
The average cost of an endometrial biopsy is about $200.
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