In the saline sonogram (also know as a hysterosonogram or sonohysterogram) the uterus is filled and expanded with saline (salt solution) using a catheter passed through the vagina and cervix into the uterus. Ideally 3D (three dimensional) ultrasound vaginal probe is then inserted into the vagina and abnormalities such as fibroids and polyps can usually be seen.
We believe that 3D ultrasound technology is critical for saline sonograms. It allows the infertility specialist to obtain over 400 ultrasound pictures of the internal architecture of the uterus in less that 2 seconds while saline is simultaneously being injected. The pictures can then be analyzed in all three dimensions after the probe has been removed. Most importantly, the 3D ultrasound provides a coronal view (3rd dimension) that is not typically seen with 2D ultrasound equipment. The coronal view allows for visualization of the typical triangular view of the uterine cavity as seen at the time of hysterosalpingogram (HSG).
Ultrasound pictures also provides information about the wall of the uterus (myometrium) that is not seen at HSG. This may include fibroids. The size of the fibroids as well as their proximity to the uterine cavity can be determined. 3D ultrasound technology has revolutionized our ability to easily and accurately evaluate the uterine cavity.