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Endometrial Ablation (cont.)

Endometrial Ablation Precautions and Preparation

Endometrial ablation is not an appropriate treatment for every woman. It cannot be performed when a woman is pregnant or when a woman desires to become pregnant at any time in the future. Endometrial ablation should not be performed when there is infection in the genital tract. Prior to the procedure, the woman must undergo a thorough physical examination including a sampling (biopsy) of the endometrium to confirm that cancer is not present.

Imaging studies and/or visual examination of the uterine cavity using a hysteroscope (a lighted viewing instrument that is inserted to visualize the inside of the uterus) are typically also carried out to exclude the presence of abnormalities, such as uterine polyps or benign (fibroid) tumors beneath the endometrium, that could be responsible for the heavy bleeding. These can often be simply removed without the need for destruction of the entire endometrium.

Because a thinner endometrium is easier to destroy, some women may need to take hormonal medications in the weeks prior to the procedure for optimal results. These medications serve to thin the endometrial lining and increase the likelihood of successful ablation.

If a woman has an intrauterine contraceptive device (IUD) in place, it must be removed prior to the procedure.

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