Painful HSG Test! Yikes!

posted 1 year ago in TTC
  • poll: What level of pain did you experience during your HSG test?

    Really High





  • Post # 2
    1856 posts
    Buzzing bee

    YES.  I had my HSG last Monday and holy hell, I was not prepared.  I had read that it was bad for “some” women but mostly just discomfort and mild cramping.  I have a pretty high pain tolerance so, like you, I wasn’t super worried.  

    First, I have a very very small cervical opening so it took them using 3 implements to even get the catheter in.  GREAT.  Super uncomfortable and stressful.  Then when the dye went in, like you said – HOLY SH*T.  It hurt SO BAD.  The poor nurse was trying to distract me, telling me to breathe, but it was awful.  It lasted maybe 10-15 seconds and I’m honestly not sure I could have taken any more.  I also didn’t have any blockages so there was nothing going on that should have made it THAT painful. 

    Once it was over I had teared up a little (I was trying really hard to keep it together and not fully cry) and I needed to sit for a minute.  I think I went into a little bit of shock, as I had to collect myself before I could get up – I was shaking.  I also took 600mg of ibuprofen in advance but it did absolutely no good.  I’m glad I took the rest of the day off of work.

    I’m sorry it was so painful for you, but – you’re not alone!  For any ladies getting this procedure done, I hope it’s not bad, but please be aware that it can be; I think knowing that in advance may steel you a bit for the pain, should it come.

    Post # 3
    9632 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2013

    Mine just felt like mild cramping. 

    Post # 4
    1917 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: May 2016

    i had zero pain during this. i dont remember all that was done because of how long ago it was, but i only remember them using dye, to see if the tubes were blocked or not.  i dont remember any part that involved a catheter or a balloon…. 

    Post # 5
    1856 posts
    Buzzing bee

    View original reply
    Kslim13 :  Oh wow.  That’s interesting!  It’s my understanding that they use the catheter to insert the dye that flushes everything out, and the balloon is what helps hold the catheter in place in the cervix while they push the dye through.  I did a lot of research after the fact to try to understand why it was so uncomfortable.

    Post # 6
    7567 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2012

    Literally the ONLY reason I didn’t go through with it was my fear of how bad the pain might be. I had googled every combo of words to research an HSG and it scared the crap out of me. I’m a total wuss and for 3 months I put it off, despite not getting pregnant. The month I finally decided to scheudle one I got pregnant, even though that pregnancy (and the one after) wasn’t viable, I did finally get a keeper on the third pregnancy. I still get anxious thinking about it.

    Post # 7
    1256 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    Had it twice. My right tube is blocked. First time was uncomfortable. Second time was more so, but my cervix wouldn’t retain the catheter so I had it attempted 3 times. Went to work both days after the procedure.

    Post # 8
    2633 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2017

    It wasn’t bad enough to warrant pain medication imo. I took Tylenol before hand, and right at the moment it hurt, it was over. Mine was done with fluoroscopy, so I was actually on the xray table (sort of laying inside it, there were no stirrups).  They make you lay for 5 min after to make sure you don’t faint, which is really common.  Mine didn’t bleed at all.

    Post # 10
    1349 posts
    Bumble bee

    Mine was definitely uncomfortable, probably a 6-7 out of 10 on the pain scale.  It was all cramping, nothing sharp.  I took 600mg of Motrin beforehand. The worst part was at one point they told me to cough. I forget what part that was, but it was before they inserted the dye. I think they were using the tool to tug the end of the cervix down and the cough helped push it down further? Either than or it was a distraction technique. All in all it was certainly not a pleasant experience but the anticipation was worse than the actual event, at least for me. I had no blockages and bled lightly for a few hours afterward.  It is interesting to see how different people have different experiences! 

    I rewarded myself afterward with a milkshake, highly recommend. 

    Post # 11
    757 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: August 2014

    I had two hsg’s during my fertility testing. The first time lasted a fairly long time, and I found it very uncomfortable but not entirely excruciating. The first time, they were in there pushing dye for a while and said they thought I had a blockage at the end of one tube. The report was somewhat questionable, and I wasn’t willing to have surgery without clarification. So I had a second one. The balloon still really hurt (and the nurse initially inflated it and let me sit there when the doctor wasn’t even there yet! I asked her to take it out until we were ready to go…). The second one was super quick, and no blockages. 

    Post # 12
    1096 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: December 2014

    Mine was a 10/10 on the pain scale. It was horrific. Standing up for the first time after my 2 c/sections was 100 times more pleasant than that. Breaking bones was a million times more enjoyable for me. Pretty much the worst thing I have experienced in my life. I passed out from the pain and just to note that I normally feel Zero pain during Pap smears or examinations so I did not go into it unnecessarily tense or anxious. I am allergic to ibuprofen though so could only take a codeine based tablet beforehand. 

    Post # 13
    5998 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: January 2017

    I didn’t take any painkillers before mine and I regretted it so bad. Pain was easily a 8/10. 

    Post # 14
    1360 posts
    Bumble bee

    View original reply
    birdymama :  I think everyone is just different! Maybe the brain registers the pain more for some than others? It HURT for me and I had no blockages. 

    But I also feel quite a lot of pain during ovulation and most women feel nothing. 

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