Assessment of Tubal Patency: A Prospective Comparison of Diagnostic Hysteroscopy and Laparoscopic Chromopertubation

J Minim Invasive Gynecol. 2020 Jan;27(1):135-140. doi: 10.1016/j.jmig.2019.03.006. Epub 2019 Mar 15.


Study objective: To evaluate whether the presence of a visualizable "flow" effect in the fallopian tube ostia in hysteroscopy was predictive of tubal patency.

Design: A prospective cohort study.

Setting: In a prospective study, infertile women who underwent surgery because of infertility between March and November 2018 were included. The main outcome parameter was fallopian tube patency assessed by laparoscopic chromopertubation. The predictive parameter tested was the presence of hysteroscopic tube flow.

Patients: Seventy-two infertile women.

Interventions: Combined hysteroscopy and laparoscopy with chromopertubation.

Results: One-hundred forty-four fallopian tubes were evaluated, with 88 (61.1%) patent tubes at laparoscopic chromopertubation. A positive hysteroscopic flow effect was recorded for 94 (65.3%) ostia and was accurate in predicting patency (p < .001), with a sensitivity of 85.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 76.1-91.9) and a specificity of 66.1% (95% CI, 52.2-78.2). A multivariate binary regression model revealed that the presence of a hydrosalpinx (odds ratio = 8.216; 95% CI, 1.062-63.574; p = .044) and peritubal adhesions (odds ratio = 3.439; 95% CI, 1.142-10.353; p = .028) were associated with a false-normal flow result. A hazy hysteroscopic picture was found in 15 of 21 (71.4%) and 5 of 51 (9.8%) cases with and without bilateral tubal occlusion, respectively (p < .001, sensitivity = 71.4% [95% CI, 47.8-88.7], specificity = 90.2% [95% CI, 78.6-96.7]).

Conclusions: The presence of hysteroscopic tubal flow was a reliable indicator of tubal patency. A hydrosalpinx or peritubal adhesions increase the risk for a false-normal result. A hazy hysteroscopic picture suggests bilateral tubal occlusion. Using the hysteroscopic flow effect, one can provide additional information for the patient.

Keywords: Chromopertubation; Fallopian tubes; Female infertility; Hysteroscopy; Laparoscopy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Fallopian Tube Diseases / complications
  • Fallopian Tube Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Fallopian Tube Patency Tests / methods
  • Fallopian Tube Patency Tests / standards
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hysteroscopy / adverse effects
  • Hysteroscopy / methods*
  • Indigo Carmine / administration & dosage
  • Infertility, Female / diagnosis*
  • Infertility, Female / etiology
  • Laparoscopy / adverse effects
  • Laparoscopy / methods*
  • Middle Aged
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Staining and Labeling / methods*
  • Young Adult


  • Indigo Carmine