A study of the cost, accuracy, and benefits of 3-dimensional sonography compared with hysterosalpingography in women with uterine abnormalities

J Ultrasound Med. 2012 Jan;31(1):81-5. doi: 10.7863/jum.2012.31.1.81.


Objectives: We conducted a prospective blinded study to evaluate the costs, accuracy, risks, and benefits of 3-dimensional (3D) transvaginal sonography compared to hysterosalpingography.

Methods: A total of 101 women aged 26 to 44 years with evidence of uterine anomalies were enrolled. All participants had routine hysterosalpingography as part of their infertility evaluation as well as 3D transvaginal sonography as part of the study. Surgical findings were used as the standard for final diagnosis.

Results: A total of 6 normal uteri and 119 uterine anomalies were classified: 30 congenital uterine anomalies (3 arcuate, 1 unicornuate, 4 bicornuate, 2 didelphys, and 20 septate uteri) and 89 acquired anomalies (38 polyps, 30 fibroids, 17 synechiae, and 4 adenomyosis). Congenital anomalies were correctly identified in 30 of 30 cases by 3D sonography but from 10 to 30 of 30 cases by hysterosalpingography. The detection rates for acquired uterine anomalies were lower for both techniques: 44 to 89 of 89 cases for 3D sonography and 22 to 74 of 89 cases for hysterosalpingography. Only 7 of the 20 septi would have been surgically corrected if patients only had hysterosalpingography. On the contrary, 30 of 30 patients with congenital uterine anomalies, 2 of 4 patients with adenomyosis, and all 6 patients with normal uteri were spared from surgery with diagnoses by 3D sonography. No adverse effects were reported after sonography, and only 6 minor ones were reported after hysterosalpingography.

Conclusions: Three-dimensional transvaginal sonography provides visualization and evaluation of the uterine cavity with similar or better accuracy than standard hysterosalpingography in the office setting, with lower cost and morbidity.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysterosalpingography / adverse effects
  • Hysterosalpingography / economics
  • Hysterosalpingography / methods
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / adverse effects
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / economics*
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional / methods*
  • Observer Variation
  • Pain / etiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Ultrasonography
  • Uterine Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Uterus / diagnostic imaging