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What is a Saline Infusion Sonogram?

A saline sonogram (SIS) is a special ultrasound that helps a fertility doctor see the inside of your uterus.


How Saline Sonograms are Used:

A doctor, typically a fertility doctor or reproductive endocrinologist, orders this test to diagnose uterine problems.  Most importantly, this test helps determine fertility problems caused by the uterus.  This test is also commonly performed before a transfer in the IVF (In Vitro Fertilization) process.


Procedure Details:

This sonogram is very similar to a regular transvaginal ultrasound.  What is notably different is that salt water fills the uterus, to help the doctor get a better look at uterine abnormalities.


The saline sonogram will show:

  • Uterine Polyps.
  • Uterine Fibroids.
  • Irregularities of the Uterus.


What happens during this procedure?

Most importantly, you should know that this procedure is a quick one and typically doesn’t hurt.


The Saline Sonogram Process:

  1. First, it begins very similarly to your regular pap. A doctor places a speculum into the vagina.  After the doctor washes your cervix with a cleanser, a soft and thin flexible tube is inserted into the uterus.  Most patients don’t feel this part.
  2. Secondly, the doctor removes the speculum while leaving the catheter inside. Then a specially trained sonographer takes images of the inside of the uterus.  While they take pictures salt water enters the uterus through the tubing, like water through a tiny straw.  Some women feel a bit of cramping or a feeling of fullness.  Most women do not feel the procedure very much.
  3. After the sonographer finishes taking pictures, the wand and catheter easily slide out.
  4. Finally, when a woman first sits up after the saline sonogram, she often feels water coming out of her vagina. There is no need to worry, as absorbent pads are beneath each patient.  However, most women choose to wear a pad afterwards.  A small pad catches any remaining water that leaks out.

The doctor receives the report and reviews the results.