This test is done once your period has stopped and before expected ovulation—on about day 8–12 of you menstrual cycle. In most cases, you can be inseminated during the same cycle. Prior to the investigation, the result of a chlamydia swab from the neck of the womb (cervix) that is no more than three months old should be available. The chlamydia swab can be taken at VivaNeo or by your GP/gynaecologist.
The HSN can be done on a gynaecology couch. After cleaning your cervix (so that no bacteria ascend into your womb), a thin catheter is inserted. When the catheter is in place, a small balloon is filled with air. This is done to ensure that the fluid that is injected into the womb does flow back out through the cervix but passes into the fallopian tubes. When the balloon is being filled, some women may be aware of a feeling of tension in the abdomen, but it is not painful. When the balloon has been filled with water, an ultrasound will be done. During the scan, a mixture of sterile salt water and air will be injected into the womb while we follow the passage of the water through the fallopian tubes. If the fallopian tubes are blocked, the fluid will not be able to flow freely through them.
Some women develop period-type pain during the HSN. HSN is done without sedation, and most women can go to work immediately afterwards. For some women, it may be a good idea to take a few painkillers, e.g. 1 g of Panodil, an hour before a HSN. You can have a rest before you return home.
You may have a thin discharge and possibly some spotting after a HSN. Therefore, we advise you to wear a sanitary towel afterwards. The risk of infection is minimal, but if you develop pain and fever in the days after the HSN it is important that you contact a doctor with a view to getting treatment if required. You can take Panodil for pain, but it is usually not necessary. If both of your fallopian tubes are found to be blocked, our doctors will discuss further treatment options with you. You may be advised to either have an investigation that looks at the fallopian tubes (a laparoscopy) or to proceed directly to IVF.