What Is a D and C Medical Operation?

According to WebMD, a D and C operation is one way to refer to a dilation and curettage operation, a procedure in which the uterine lining is scraped. D and C procedures are performed to prevent infection following miscarriages and abortions. The procedure is also performed to diagnose and treat uterine abnormalities.

According to the Mayo Clinic, doctors perform dilation and curettage procedures by first opening up the cervix using a small instrument or medication. Once the cervix is open, uterine tissue is scraped out with a sharp instrument called a curette. In certain procedures, suction is also implemented.

Medline Plus explains that D and C operations are performed to diagnose certain conditions, rule out uterine cancer and treat heavy or irregular menstrual bleeding. D and C procedures are also recommended for women who experience bleeding after menopause or who wear intrauterine devices. Risks related to D and C procedures include puncturing of the uterus, scarring of the uterine lining that can lead to infertility and cervical tearing. Minor side effects following D and C procedures include vaginal bleeding and back pain. Individuals who undergo a D and C procedure should avoid wearing tampons for one to two weeks following the procedure and can typically resume normal activities within a short period of time.