Is It Normal to Bleed After an Endometrial Ablation?

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Ask the experts

What is the role of the endometrial ablation procedure for women with abnormal heavy bleeding?

Doctor's response

Endometrial ablation destroys the lining of the uterus. Medications are used prior to the procedure to increase the success of the procedure. Advantages of the procedure are that both hospital stay and recovery time are shorter than hysterectomy (removal of the entire uterus). Furthermore, there is no surgical incision required for endometrial ablation, because it can be performed using a hysteroscope instrument inserted through the vaginal canal. For these reasons, endometrial ablation is recommended increasingly frequently for women who have failed or refused medical therapies. However, performing endometrial ablation requires training and experience. Most women are quite satisfied after endometrial ablation, but sometimes additional procedures, such as repeat endometrial ablation or even hysterectomy, may be required. When a women is picking which procedure to pursue, she will have to juggle the risk of needing a repeat procedure in several years if she has endometrial ablation versus the risks of having hysterectomy (incision, longer recovery).

Medical Author: Carolyn Janet Crandall, M.D.

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Reviewed on 1/11/2018