What Is Uterus Scraping?

woman hospital patient waitingIf you follow celebrity news closely, then you may have heard that reality TV star Kim Kardashian had her uterus scraped or “cleaned up” to increase her fertility on a recent episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians. To be clear, the actual medical term for the procedure is called a hysteroscopy with dilation and curettage (D&C) and come to find out, it’s a fairly common procedure.

With a hysteroscopy and D&C, a camera is placed inside the uterus to search for tissue, fibroids, polyps or any foreign bodies. If anything irregular is detected, it gets removed. It does require anesthesia, but it’s not a complicated procedure. In fact, patients are free to return home that same day without missing work or having to be placed on bedrest. In Kim’s case, there was leftover placenta in her uterus after giving birth to her 22-month-old daughter, North West.

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BlackDoctor.org recently spoke with Dr. Desiree McCarthy-Keith, a reproductive specialist in Atlanta, Georgia, to gain some further insights regarding the procedure:

An overview of the procedure:

“Scraping the uterus is not necessarily a specific medical term for the procedure, but I believe that after Kim had her baby, there was a portion of the placenta or some tissue that was left behind in the uterus and it just kind of got stuck in there so the doctor went in and removed that tissue. With a D&C, you can remove the tissue in the uterus and you can even insert a camera inside the uterus and look and see if there’s a tissue, fibroid or polyp that needs to be removed. But, if there’s a woman who’s having trouble getting pregnant, we don’t just say, ‘Let’s have the procedure.’ We have to take a good look first.”

“A lot of times with fertility treatments, what we do is an ultrasound of the pelvis. With the ultrasound, we can see if there’s a fibroid or if there’s anything irregular in the uterine cavity. There’s also an X-ray test that we do; it’s actually one of the initial tests, where we put dye inside the uterus and take X-rays and watch the dye move through the uterus. It can also show scar tissue, a fibroid, a mass or something. The next step is to go to a surgeon and actually remove and identify what that is.”