Dilation and curettage may be performed in a hospital, clinic or your doctor's office, and it's usually done as an outpatient procedure.
Before the procedure:
- Follow your doctor's instructions on limiting food and drink.
- Arrange for someone to help you get home because you may be drowsy after the anesthesia wears off.
- Clear your schedule to allow enough time for the procedure and recovery afterward. You'll likely spend a few hours in recovery after the procedure.
In some cases, your doctor may start the process of dilating your cervix a few hours or even a day before the procedure. This helps your cervix open gradually and is usually done when your cervix needs to be dilated more than in a standard D&C, such as during pregnancy terminations or with certain types of hysteroscopy.
To promote dilation, your doctor uses a medication called misoprostol (Cytotec) — given orally or vaginally — to soften the cervix or inserts a slender rod made of laminaria into your cervix. The laminaria gradually expands by absorbing the fluid in your cervix, causing your cervix to open.