While some women might breeze through their “time of the month” in a few days, others experience painful cramps and a heavy flow that lasts for a week or more. In these cases, endometrial ablation may help. Here is a little more information about this procedure and what to expect during the recovery.
Understanding Endometrial Ablation
What Is Endometrial Ablation?
To pave the way for conception, the interior lining of the uterus, called the endometrium, thickens every month. If conception doesn’t occur, the body sheds this lining through menstruation. Unfortunately, some women’s uteruses thicken too much, creating problems like polyps and heavy, long-lasting periods.
Endometrial ablation is a medical technique used to remove the endometrium, significantly reducing or stopping periods altogether. In addition to preventing pregnancy, the procedure can also significantly reduce the length and flow of periods, as well as lessen symptoms like cramps.
There are several ways to perform an ablation, including electrosurgery, cyrotherapy, and even microwave ablation. Your doctor will consider your individual anatomy, symptoms, and preferences when choosing which technique is appropriate. For example, while microwave ablation works well for most women, electrosurgery may be a better option if you have uterine fibroids or other material that needs to be removed from the lining of the uterus.
What Is the Recovery Like?
Most women who undergo endometrial ablation can return to their normal routine within a week. Bleeding, cramping, and nausea are common within the first few days following the procedure, although many of these symptoms can be controlled with an over-the-counter medication. Complications are rare, but call your doctor immediately if you have trouble urinating, severe bleeding, a fever, or abdominal pain, as these symptoms can be signs of infection.
In the long term, most women who undergo endometrial ablation experience easier periods. Some even have discontinued periods after the procedure.
Whether you are struggling with ongoing menstrual trouble or are pregnant, the experienced doctors at Hilltop Obstetrics & Gynecology can help. Each doctor who works at the practice is a board-certified OBGYN and a member of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. If you’re wondering if ablation is right for you or need a checkup, visit their website to learn about their services, or call (888) 424-0017 for an appointment.