Definition - What does Hematometra mean?
Hematometra occurs when blood is trapped in the uterus. Normally, uterine blood (the material released during menstruation) flows through the cervix and out of the vagina; a hematometra occurs when that path is blocked. As a result, the blood is restricted to the uterine cavity. While sperm may still enter a woman's body through the cervical canal and meet an egg released during ovulation, the fertilized egg would be unable to implant into the uterine lining. This is because the old blood filling the uterus would prevent new endometrial linings from developing and provide an unhealthy environment, unsuited for embryonic growth.
FertilitySmarts explains Hematometra
Hematometra can be due to congenital problems, improper healing following a surgical procedure, or certain illnesses, including:
- Transverse vaginal septum
- Imperforate hymen
- Damage from surgical procedure
- Endometrial scar tissue
- Following childbirth
- Following a surgical abortion
Symptoms of a hematometra include:
- Abdominal pain
- Abdominal cramping
- Frequent urination
- Abnormal vaginal bleeding
A hematometra can be diagnosed using symptoms experienced such as pain and lack of menstrual period, along with visual imaging via ultrasound machine of the uterine cavity. Visual confirmation of a blood mass indicates a hematometra is present. Treatment typically requires a dilation and curettage (D&C) to drain the blood. Other procedures may be required to address the cause of the blockage and prevent another hematometra from forming. Additionally, treatment would restore a woman's ability to concieve.