Post-abortion hysteroscopy: a method for early diagnosis of congenital and acquired intrauterine causes of abortions

Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2011 May;156(1):101-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ejogrb.2010.12.025. Epub 2011 Mar 2.


Objective: Recurrent pregnancy loss is often defined as three or more consecutive pregnancy losses but there are no strict criteria for initiation of investigations after a miscarriage. We compared the frequency of uterine anomalies diagnosed by hysteroscopy following one, two and three or more miscarriages.

Study design: In our study 151 patients underwent diagnostic hysteroscopy following a missed or an incomplete abortion. Uterine septum, subseptum, arcuate uterus, and uterine hypoplasia are classified as congenital uterine anomalies and polyps, synechia, and submucous myomas are classified as acquired uterine abnormalities.

Results: 151 Patients were enrolled in the study. The pregnancy numbers of the patients varied between 1 and 12. Sixty nine (46%) of the patients had one miscarriage, 42 (28%) had two miscarriages and 40 (26%) had three or more miscarriages. Diagnostic hysteroscopy revealed normal uterine cavity in 61.1% of the patients, congenital uterine anomalies in 20.4% and acquired uterine pathologies in 18.5%. Among the congenital anomalies, 14 (9.3%) were uterine septum, 10 (6.6%) were subseptate uterus, 4 (2.6%) were arcuate uterus and 3 (1.9%) were uterine hypoplasia. Among acquired abnormalities 14 (9.3%) were uterine synechia, 12 (7.9%) were endometrial polyps, and 2 (1.3%) were submucous myoma. Among patients who had one miscarriage 64.1% had a normal uterine cavity, 18.2% had congenital abnormalities and 17.7% had acquired uterine pathologies. Of patients with two miscarriages, 52% had a normal uterine cavity, 21.9% had congenital anomalies and 26.1% had acquired uterine pathology. In the three or more miscarriage group, 58.4% had normal uterine cavity, 25.3% had congenital anomalies, and 16.3% had acquired uterine pathology. We did not find any statistically significant difference between the number of miscarriages and pathologic diagnostic hysteroscopy findings.

Conclusions: Post-abortion office hysteroscopy is a simple and efficient tool in the early diagnosis of congenital and acquired uterine pathologies. Diagnostic hysteroscopy can be performed after the first miscarriage in order to determine congenital and acquired uterine pathologies, with regard to the patient's age and anxiety level.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Habitual / etiology
  • Abortion, Incomplete / etiology
  • Abortion, Missed / etiology
  • Abortion, Spontaneous / etiology*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Female
  • Gynatresia / diagnosis*
  • Gynatresia / epidemiology
  • Gynatresia / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hysteroscopy*
  • Leiomyoma / diagnosis*
  • Leiomyoma / epidemiology
  • Leiomyoma / physiopathology
  • Polyps / diagnosis*
  • Polyps / epidemiology
  • Polyps / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy
  • Tissue Adhesions / diagnosis
  • Tissue Adhesions / epidemiology
  • Tissue Adhesions / physiopathology
  • Turkey / epidemiology
  • Urogenital Abnormalities / epidemiology
  • Uterine Diseases / diagnosis
  • Uterine Diseases / epidemiology
  • Uterine Diseases / physiopathology
  • Uterine Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Uterine Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Uterine Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Uterus / abnormalities*
  • Young Adult