Endometriosis Treatment: Understanding the D and C procedure

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Once you speak to your gynaecologist about endometriosis, one of the first options you may be asked to go as part of your treatment process is a D and C routine.

Ever since I started sharing my experience here with you all about endometriosis, a lot of you have responded on various social media pages and even here, saying how you too are suffering from the same.

It is a little difficult initially to talk about endometriosis, as it is a very intimate health condition. Also, in some cases of endometriosis, you may have to go through various invasive procedures, examinations and so on.

Once you speak to your gynaecologist about endometriosis, one of the first options you may be asked to go as part of your treatment process is a D and C routine.

What is D and C?

D and C is the short form for a surgical procedure called dilation and curettage. In this procedure, the surgeon first dilates the cervix (which is the part of the tissue that connects the vagina and the uterus) and inserts a surgical instrument to scrape out the lining of the uterus.

Why is it done?

While a D and C procedure may be done if you suffer from endometriosis, it can also be done in the following cases:

  • To remove any remaining small pieces of the placenta after a delivery. This will help to avoid any heavy bleeding or infection.
  • If you are suffering from unusually heavy bleeding or very irregular or painful periods, your doctor may suggest a D and C to check for the cause. This can also help to confirm whether or not you have endometriosis.
  • It also helps to check any hormonal imbalance in the body and in some cases can help to diagnose as well as be a part of the treatment for uterine cancer.
Endometriosis Treatment: Understanding the D and C procedure

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How long does the procedure take?

You can have the D and C operation done in your doctor’s clinic (if they have the required equipment) or in the outpatient department of a hospital. It is not a very long procedure and can be done within 15 to 20 minutes. In most cases, you will be able to leave the hospital within four to five hours.

In some cases, if your doctor feels your health needs to be monitored more or if you are already suffering from something, you may be asked to stay overnight or for a couple of days.

What form of anaesthesia will be used?

As this is a proper surgery, you will have to go under the influence of anaesthesia. The type of anaesthesia you want to go for will be decided after you speak to your doctor. Here are some of the options you can choose from:

  • General anaesthesia – you will be fully unconscious and may not be awake for quite a few hours after the procedure.
  • Epidural or spinal anaesthesia – you will not feel any sensation from the waist down but will be awake.
  • Local anaesthesia – only the area around your cervix will be numbed.

Any side effects?

You may experience slight spotting, discomfort or a little pain in the lower abdomen or stomach.

Infection

While it is not very common, immediately speak to the doctor if you notice any of these signs that could point towards infection:

  • Foul discharge
  • Very heavy continuous bleeding
  • Fever
  • Excessive pain

Many women are going through a D and C procedure, so in case your doctor advises the same, do not panic. I had two D and C procedures myself in the past three months, and even though they did not help me really, I did recover through the procedure.

I have gone through more treatment options and I will share them next week in a related article. Till then, if any of you have also been diagnosed with endometriosis, do share what treatment methods you have tried and also share if you had a D and C.

Also Read Padma Lakshmi: On breaking stereotypes, being a mother and living with endometriosis

Written by

debolina

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