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Hum Reprod. 1999 Mar;14(3):707-11.

Evaluation of the performance of fertiloscopy in 160 consecutive infertile patients with no obvious pathology.

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Centre de Recherche et d'Etude de la Stérilité, Lyon, France.


We have defined fertiloscopy as the combination in one investigation of transvaginal hydropelviscopy, dye-test, optional salpingoscopy, and hysteroscopy, performed on an outpatient basis under local anaesthesia or neuroleptanalgesia. We have applied this approach in a routine manner to 160 infertile patients with no obvious pathology. Fertiloscopy was achieved in 154 patients (96.2%). In five patients visualization was not satisfactory because of technical problem or adhesions in the pouch of Douglas. We had one (0.6%) rectal injury, which was treated conservatively. Sixty patients (37.5%) had normal fertiloscopic examination. Endometriosis was discovered in 21 patients (13.1%) post-pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) lesions in 58 cases (36.2%), and subtle abnormalities in 15 cases (9.3%). Salpingoscopy was completed when post-PID lesions were encountered. In 39% of cases only partial examination was possible because of external tubal adhesions, but it was nevertheless sufficient to obtain a good view of the first one-third of the ampulla. In all, 74 patients (46.2%) were referred directly to in-vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures, and so avoided a further laparoscopy. Quality of imaging, accuracy of the pelvic examination in a physiological manner, and safety of the procedure are the main advantages of this minimally invasive technique. Selection of the patients for surgery is therefore enhanced, and indication for IVF is better balanced, avoiding the performance of extensive procedures in patients who should thus benefit from this less traumatic alternative.

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