Endometrial biopsy is an office procedure in which a small sample of the uterine lining is removed and sent to the pathologist to look at under a microscope. Your doctor may recommend this procedure if you have unusually heavy periods, unusually frequent and irregular menstrual bleeding, spotting in between your periods, abnormal bleeding on hormone therapy or bleeding after you have entered the menopause.
The doctor inserts a standard vaginal speculum and then attaches an instrument to the cervix to stabilize it. If necessary, the cervix is dilated by gradually inserting a tapered instrument (shaped like the end of a blunt pen) into the cervix. A small plastic tube is then inserted up into the uterus, rotated several times to sample as much of the endometrial lining as possible, and removed. The sample is placed in formalin before transport to the laboratory. The procedure causes brief but intense cramping. We ask you to take 800 mg ibuprofen about 30 minutes prior to your appointment time. Sometimes an anesthesia block is necessary. Your doctor or nurse will call you with the report in about a week. If you do not hear within that time frame, you should call us to request your report.
Possible complications are bleeding, cramping and endometrial or pelvic infection. Serious complications are rare. Some bleeding and cramping is to be expected. If it seems out of the ordinary, is increasing in severity, or is accompanied by fever >100.4º, please call our office (telephone answered 24 hours).