The following tests might be used to diagnose uterine polyps:

  • Transvaginal ultrasound. A slender, wandlike device placed in the vagina emits sound waves and creates an image of the uterus, including its insides. A polyp might be clearly present or there might be an area of thickened endometrial tissue.

    A related procedure, known as hysterosonography (his-tur-o-suh-NOG-ruh-fee) — also called sonohysterography (son-oh-his-tur-OG-ruh-fee) — involves having salt water (saline) injected into the uterus through a small tube placed through the vagina and cervix. The saline expands the uterus, which gives a clearer view of the inside of the uterus during the ultrasound.

  • Hysteroscopy. This involves inserting a thin, flexible, lighted telescope (hysteroscope) through the vagina and cervix into the uterus. Hysteroscopy allows for viewing the inside of the uterus.
  • Endometrial biopsy. A suction catheter inside the uterus collects a specimen for lab testing. Uterine polyps might be confirmed by an endometrial biopsy, but the biopsy could also miss the polyp.

Most uterine polyps are benign. This means that they're not cancer. But, some precancerous changes of the uterus, called endometrial hyperplasia, or uterine cancers appear as uterine polyps. A tissue sample of the removed polyp is analyzed for signs of cancer.

Transvaginal ultrasound

Transvaginal ultrasound

During a transvaginal ultrasound, you lie on an exam table while a health care provider or a medical technician puts a wandlike device, known as a transducer, into the vagina. Sound waves from the transducer create images of the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tubes.



During hysterosonography (his-tur-o-suh-NOG-ruh-fee), a care provider uses a thin, flexible tube (catheter) to inject salt water (saline) into the hollow part of the uterus. An ultrasound probe gets images of the inside of the uterus to check for anything unusual.



During hysteroscopy, a thin, lighted instrument (hysteroscope) provides a view of the inside of the uterus.


Treatment for uterine polyps might involve:

  • Watchful waiting. Small polyps without symptoms might resolve on their own. Treatment of small polyps is unnecessary for those who aren't at risk of uterine cancer.
  • Medication. Certain hormonal medications, including progestins and gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists, may lessen symptoms of the polyp. But taking such medications is usually a short-term solution at best — symptoms typically recur once the medicine is stopped.
  • Surgical removal. During hysteroscopy, instruments inserted through the device used to see inside the uterus (hysteroscope) make it possible to remove polyps. The removed polyp will likely be sent to a lab for examination.

If a uterine polyp contains cancer cells, your provider will talk with you about the next steps in evaluation and treatment.

Rarely, uterine polyps can recur. If they do, they need more treatment.

Clinical trials

Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this condition.

Preparing for your appointment

Your first appointment will likely be with your primary care provider or a gynecologist. Have a family member or friend go with you, if possible. This can help you remember the information you receive.

What you can do

Make a list of the following:

  • Your symptoms, even those you don't think are related, and when they began.
  • All medications, vitamins and supplements you take, including doses.
  • Questions to ask your provider.

For uterine polyps, some basic questions to ask include:

  • What could be causing my symptoms?
  • What tests might I need?
  • Are medications available to treat my condition?
  • Under what circumstances do you recommend surgery?
  • Could uterine polyps affect my ability to become pregnant?
  • Will treatment of uterine polyps improve my fertility?
  • Can uterine polyps be cancerous?

Don't hesitate to ask other questions.

What to expect from your doctor

Some questions your provider might ask include:

  • How often do you have symptoms?
  • How severe are your symptoms?
  • Does anything seem to improve your symptoms?
  • Does anything seem to make your symptoms worse?
  • Have you been treated for uterine polyps or cervical polyps before?
  • Have you had fertility problems? Do you want to become pregnant?
  • Does your family have a history of breast, colon or endometrial cancer?

Nov 15, 2022

  1. Stewart EA. Endometrial polyps. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed July 18, 2022.
  2. Nijkang NP, et al. Endometrial polyps: Pathogenesis, sequelae and treatment. Sage Open Medicine. 2019; doi:10.1177/2050312119848247.
  3. Committee opinion: The use of hysteroscopy for the diagnosis and treatment of intrauterine pathology. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. 2020. https://www.acog.org/clinical/clinical-guidance/committee-opinion/articles/2020/03/the-use-of-hysteroscopy-for-the-diagnosis-and-treatment-of-intrauterine-pathology. Accessed July 18, 2022.
  4. DeCherney AH, et al., eds. Benign disorders of the uterine corpus. In: Current Diagnosis & Treatment: Obstetrics & Gynecology. 12th ed. McGraw Hill; 2019. https://accessmedicine.mhmedical.com. Accessed July 18, 2022.
  5. Heavy menstrual bleeding. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/blooddisorders/women/menorrhagia. Accessed July 18, 2022.

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