Endometrial ablation

• Endometrial ablation is an alternative to hysterectomy
   as a treatment for menstrual bleeding problems. The
   procedure involves stripping the lining of the uterus so
   that the tissue which produces the menstrual bleeding
   is destroyed or 'ablated'.

• Hormonal drugs may need to be taken for a perIod
   before the operation in order to 'thin' the lining of the
   uterus, and make the operation easier and more

• The operation is performed under a general anaesthetic
   and takes about 1 hour.

• The cervix is dilated to allow a fibre-optic 'telescope'
   called an hysteroscope to be inserted into the uterus so
   that the lining can be seen.

• The tissue lining the uterus can then be destroyed by a
   laser, or stripped away using a hot, wire loop called a
   resectoscope or a heated revolving ball.

• After the operation, pain killers may be necessary and
   some light bleeding may occur.

• The average hospital stay is 24-48 hours and normal
   activities can usually be resumed in 2-3 weeks.

• Menstrual periods may not be entirely abolished
   following this procedure: 25% of women have no
   periods; 40-50% have acceptable periods; and 25%
   find the operation unhelpful in the long term.