Transvaginal duplex doppler ultrasonography in bleeding patients suspected of having residual trophoblastic tissue

R. Achiron*, M. Goldenberg, S. Lipitz, S. Mashiach

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To evaluate the diagnostic accuracy and clinical usefulness of high-resolution transvaginal duplex Doppler ultrasound in postpartum and post-abortion patients with excessive hemorrhage who are suspected of having residual trophoblast. Methods: Forty-eight women with excessive hemorrhage referred for possible residual trophoblastic tissue were evaluated by transvaginal duplex Doppler ultrasonography. Based on two-dimensional imaging, the patients were divided prospectively into groups: women who had an empty uterus with a normal uterine cavity, those with a pure endometrial fluid collection and no echogenic foci, those who had a mixed endometrial fluid collection with foci of echogenicity, and those with intracavitary heterogeneous material with mixed echo patterns of fluid and solid components. In each group, Doppler studies were performed and the resistance index (RI) was calculated. The two-dimensional patterns and Doppler results were correlated with clinical and pathologic follow-up. Results: Twenty-eight subjects had a normal uterine cavity and seven had a pure endometrial fluid collection; all were treated conservatively and none showed later clinical evidence of residual trophoblastic tissue. In 13 women, residual trophoblast was strongly suggested from the images of two-dimensional ultrasonography: Five showed an endometrial fluid collection with some echogenic foci, and eight exhibited intracavitary mixed echogenic material. All underwent curettage, and residual trophoblastic tissue was found in ten of the 13. The mean (± standard deviation) RI to flow in the myometrial arteries was 0.54 ± 0.15 in women without residual trophoblast and 0.35 ± 0.1 in those with residual trophoblastic tissue (P <.01). Conclusion: Our experience suggests that transvaginal duplex Doppler ultrasonography is an effective noninvasive method for evaluating patients with excessive postpartum and post-abortion hemorrhage who are suspected of having residual trophoblastic tissue. Its use enhances the positive preoperative diagnosis of residual trophoblastic tissue and may reduce unnecessary curettage procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-511
Number of pages5
JournalObstetrics and Gynecology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1993


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