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Fertility Testing

Sonohysterogram (SHG)


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SHG is shorthand for sonohysterogram, a saline infusion sonogram (also known as SIS) that is performed in the office. This procedure begins like a transvaginal ultrasound with the addition of a slow introduction of saline into the uterus. SHG is used to evaluate uterine abnormalities and the endometrium (uterine lining) as well as other disorders.

SHG is a noninvasive procedure that does not involve the radiation and contrast dye used in a hysterosalpingogram or HSG.

Fertility problems are sometimes caused by polyps, fibroids or adhesions (bands of tissue) inside the uterus. SHG can detect all of these conditions and minimize the need for invasive diagnostic procedures like biopsies and dilation and curettage (D&C). Patients with active pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) should not undergo SHG.

The SHG is performed in the days following the end of menstruation and before ovulation occurs, which allows for optimum viewing of the uterine walls. Due to cramping associated with SHG, patients are told to take ibuprofen just before the procedure. Patients should receive specific instructions for their physician's office. The SHG is performed at the clinic and is usually completed in about 15 minutes.

The saline highlights any irregularities in the uterus, including fibroids, polyps, scar tissue and other abnormalities, giving the physician a better idea of their size. This information is then used to develop a course of treatment for the patient.

SHG is a low-risk procedure that may cause mild spotting and cramping that usually responds well to ibuprofen. Patients are advised to report any post-procedure abnormal bleeding, abdominal pain or fever to their doctor.

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