Gynaecological Services

Endometrial Ablation

What is endometrial ablation?

Endometrial ablation is a surgical procedure in which the lining of the uterus, called the endometrium, is destroyed. The main goal of endometrial ablation is to reduce menstrual flow, or in some cases, stop it entirely.

Do I need endometrial ablation?

The procedure helps to treat excessive blood loss through menstrual bleeding. Your gynaecologist may recommend the endometrial ablation for one of the following reasons:

  • Extremely heavy periods that may need you to change a pad or tampon every 2 hours or less
  • Excessive bleeding that lasts longer than eight days
  • Anaemia caused by blood loss

Endometrial ablation is also recommended if medications or an intrauterine device (IUD) don’t help.

How does it work?

In order to perform endometrial ablation, you will be under general anaesthesia. Your surgeon will dilate your cervix to create a working space. Small surgical tools will be inserted through the vagina and cervix into the uterus. The tools will destroy the uterus lining with either high-energy radio frequencies or extremely hot or cold substances. There are a number of methods of endometrial ablation that can be performed, such as:

  • Electrosurgery - A scope is inserted into the uterus to get a view of the uterus. A small surgical instrument is then passed through the scope and used to carve into the uterus lining. This procedure requires general anaesthesia.
  • Cryoablation - The lining of the uterus is frozen and destroyed with the use of very cold ice balls. This procedure involves the use of ultrasound to help the surgeon track the progress of the ice balls.
  • Hot liquid - A heated saline liquid is inserted into the uterus for approximately 10 minutes in order to destroy the lining of the uterus.
  • Heated balloon - A balloon-type device is inserted into the cervix and then inflated with hot liquid, which then destroys the endometrium.
  • Microwave - An instrument that emits microwaves is inserted through the cervix. The instrument heats up the tissue.
  • Radiofrequency - An instrument that transmits radiofrequency energy and destroys tissue is placed in the uterus.

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Tebogo, mom and dad