Dilatation and Curettage or D&C as it is commonly known is an outpatient surgical procedure for the dilatation of the cervix and the subsequent scraping and cleansing of the walls of the uterus with a sharp instrument and perhaps some electric vacuum device.
There are a few essential measures to be taken before a dilatation and curettage operation:
As D&C is a surgical procedure which uses general anesthesia, it is advisable for the patient to have a session with the doctor a day or two before to know what to do and what to expect.
Food or drink should not be consumed for about 12 hours before the procedure.
Drugs (allopathic or herbal) should not be taken for about 48 hour before the operation. Any essential medication should be taken in consultation with the doctor.
Aspirin should not be taken for at least 10 days before the procedure as it can inhibit the clotting process.
A person should be arranged who can take the patient to and from the hospital as the patient will be in no condition to drive after the procedure.
A blood and urine test will be required the day before or on the actual day of the procedure.
Depending on the situation, the cervix may have to be dilated a day before. This may be done mechanically or through the application of herbal preparations or ointments.
It is important to take certain precautions after the procedure to avoid infection and to facilitate complete recovery of the patient
The patient is made to spend a few hours in the recovery room after the operation
The patient’s vital signs must be strictly monitored until consciousness is regained.
The genital area must be kept hygienically clean and sterile.
The doctor should give detailed instructions regarding precautions that have to be taken once the patient is back at home.
For a swift recovery after this procedure, the following precautions should be observed:
The patient should be given complete instructions on healthy practices to be followed during the recovery period.
Avoid inserting anything into the vagina, such as tampons or intravaginal tablets.
Sexual intercourse should be avoided for a couple of weeks or until the uterus heals.
Any abnormalities such as prolonged bleeding, fever or excessive pain should be immediately brought to the notice of the doctor.