Dilation and Curettage
Dilation and curettage involves the dilation of the cervix and scraping of the uterine lining with the use of curette. This procedure is commonly done to those who had miscarriages. This is to expulse the retained products of conception to prevent further complications that may jeopardize the life of the mother. This is considered as a blind procedure since surgeons are not able to clearly visualize what is inside the cervix.
Why Is It Done?
- To remove placental and fetal tissues after a miscarriage
- Remove excess uterine lining in cases of polycystic ovary syndrome
- To resolve abnormal uterine bleeding
Dilation and Curettage Complications
- Bleeding: Some fragments may be retained if dilation and curettage is not properly done. This leads to internal hemorrhage that is fatal to the patient.
- Infection: This happens when the procedure is not done aseptically. Microorganisms are being introduced via the cervix, which leads to infection and can complicate further into septic shock.
- Cervical injuries: Sharp and blunt instruments are used in this procedure that can actually cause injury to soft tissues of the cervix. Any injury to the cervix can result to bleeding and infection.
- Reaction to anesthesia: Dilation and curettage is usually performed under intravenous anesthesia, and many adverse effects can occur in this type of anesthetic procedure.
Dilation and Curettage Recovery
- Nausea and vomiting may be experienced post-operatively due to anesthetics.
- Slight cramping and bleeding may be noticed.
- Refrain from douching and sexual intercourse a week after D&C, this is to prevent potential infection.
- Immediately inform your doctor if you notice heavy bleeding or foul-smelling vaginal discharge.