Q: How is it done?

A: A hysterosalpingogram or HSG is a test to check the uterine cavity as well as the patency (openness) of the fallopian tubes. The HSG is usually done in the radiology department and only takes about five minutes to perform:

  • You are placed on a table on your back and bring your feet up into a "frog leg" position.
  • The doctor places a speculum in the vagina and visualizes the cervix.
  • Either a thin catheter (tube) or a narrow metal cannula are placed through the cervical opening into the uterine cavity.
  • Contrast is then slowly injected through the cannula or catheter into the uterine cavity.
  • An X-ray is taken as the uterine cavity is filling.
  • More contrast is injected so that the fallopian tubes fill and the dye will begin to spill into the abdominal cavity (if the tubes are open).
  • hsg hysterosalpingogramAdditional X-rays are taken as this "fill and spill" occurs.
  • Sometimes, when both tubes are filling up you are asked to roll to one side or the other slightly to give a slightly oblique X-ray image that may help to further delineate the anatomy. After the instruments are removed from the cervix and vagina, you may remain on the table for several minutes to recover from the cramping. Usually the results of the test are immediately available.