Endometriosis UK

Do i have endo

For years i have suffered heavy periods n alot of back pain. My periods are regular with sometimes just a say or 2 late. Ive been to my gyne n they have referred me for a hysterosalpingogram and have been told this can be very painfull. Has anyone anything regardeing this that could give me some light on this as i am clueless as to what in involves. Thank folks.

4 Replies

I have not had an HSG when awake -which it is what is is more commonly referred to.

This is where a speculum is placed in to the vagina - opened up so the medic can then insert the equipment to squirt dye through the fallopian tubes to check if they are still tubes or are blocked.

My guess is that you are having this done to check fertility prospects.

It only takes one clear tube with a working ovary in good shape at the end of it to be possible to have a natural conception - so even if half the plumbing is blocked and the other side is clear that would be good news. Hopefully both are clear.

Even with stage 4 severe endo - your tubes can be clear of any endo or adhesions. It is pot luck where the endo nests.

The pain aspect depends entirely on the individual - the procedure of dye squirting will not hurt. The speculum is the beast in this process - and same applies whether you are having a smear check or someother process that uses a speculum like having a mirena coil inserted for example.

The spedculums come if various shapes and sizes - depending on whether you have a normal tilting womb - or a retroverted womb which has flopped the other way. They do flip and flop in a healthy woman.

In a woman with endo - they tend to get stuck with adhesions in the retroverted position and stuck there like superglue.

Neither direction would cause undue pain if that was all that was wrong.

The pain side of things somes from adhesions that can be found on the inside and/or outside of the vagina. This is scar tissue - may be cause by endo - or anything else that has previously damaged the surfaces causing little wounds that become inflamed and scar tissue grows as a cushion of protection. Which is fine if no one is stretching those adhesions to the point where they tear away - and when the speculum is opened and you have adhesions it can tear them and that is AGONY . It is a very real tearing prcess and boy do you feel it.

Much like tearing a really strongly glued plaster off the skin - it will take the skin with it when it gets to breaking point. The tissue underneath is not as strong as the adhesive is or adhesions are.

So that is what can make the process very painful for any woman with already existing vaginal pain and adhesions. If you have painful smears then this will be the same and worse because the speculum is open for quite a bit longer.

What to do about it?

If it does hurt beyond your endurance or you expect it to, then warn the nurse or doc in advance. Tell them to proceed with caution and to release the speculum as soon as you tell them too. they don't need to pull it out - just close it up.

On no account are they to continue with the procedure after you tell them to stop.

Some brutal medics just carry on regardless - leaving you in agony for days afterwards and quite honestly those medics need to be complained about and kicked out of the NHS.

Take someone with you to make sure your instructions are followed.

They can stay near your head not seeing any of your down below bits but do have someone there for support if you think you may need it.

It is a wise idea to be dosed up on pain killers before hand - as strong as you can get.

3 paracetamol, or 1 prescripton strength pain killer.

You can also ask them to stop and try again once you have had some entonox (gas and air)

this takes the sting out of the procedure - if your going to hurt it will still hurt but you won't notice it quite so much.

Wiggling your toes throughout the process is also another very good tip for distracting your brain from the uncomfortable speculum, whether painful or just uncomfy - the wiggle toe effect is a good one to try and remember to do.

If it all fails and is too much to get through - please do not get too upset. We are not all superwomen - and if we do have endo and adhesions damage- the pain can be excrutiating for some of us and the test can be done under a general anaesthetic at a later date if you are ever having a laparoscopy for the endo.

That way you know nothing about it and are on morphine after the op anyway so you really won't notice the gynae pain from the procedure.

For most ladies it is not that painful or uncomfy - and I hope that applies to you, but if you hve sex pain or already know that a smear is mega painful - then let the clinic know in advance that you would like entonox on standby, and that if it is too painful then you will call a halt to the process and they should stop when you do.

Most of the ladies in gynae wards are very sympathetic and know full well how painful this is for some ladies and are only too willing to make you as comfy as possible - so it is not all horror story all the way. Just occasionally you get a real Hitler of a nurse or doc who thinks they know best and plough on regardless.

Having someone there might make them think twice - and you do then have a witness if you do want to complain.

Very Best of Luck.... hope the results are fab news.


Yes I had a hysterosalpingogram also known as a hsg

I read all about it on here and got myself so worked up about it,on the day of it I was so scared and then when the nurse told me that I couldn't take nobody In the room I started crying she reassured me and there was a lovely lady nurse that kept me talking, it was uncomfortable not like I'd read on internet though, I think they say you can take painkillers an hour before you go, was uncomfortable but it was over pretty quick , it's quite a helpful test though without that test I wouldn't have known I had hydrosalpinx in both of my tubes, I'm going to have a laparoscopy this month where she will do a hsg again but il be asleep ,because both my tubes are blocked when she looks she will decide wether to remove my tubes or clamp them, then hopefully everything else is fine I will be able to start my ivf, so the hsg is quite a helpfull test, just grit your teeth and is over so fast xxx


Thanx folks i will post back when ive had the test and im hoping the results are positive as it is really to do with fertility as im 37 and have no children. Fingers crossed i get blessed with a positive pregnancy test soon.


Fingers crossed for you xxx


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