What is a hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy is surgery to remove your uterus. Sometimes, the surgeon will also remove your fallopian tubes and ovaries during a hysterectomy.
What happens to your body when you have a hysterectomy?
One of the most significant outcomes of a hysterectomy is that you will no longer have periods.
What are the main risks with a hysterectomy?
Hysterectomies are generally safe procedures, but as with all surgeries, there are risks. These include – bleeding, infection, injury to neighbouring organs, inability to urinate, blood transfusion and blood clots.
Will I go through the Menopause?
If you have a hysterectomy and have your ovaries removed as well as your womb, and have not yet gone through the menopause, you will experience surgical menopause after your surgery. Even if you keep one or both of your ovaries, you are still likely to go into menopause earlier than you would have done otherwise.
Will I still be fertile after a hysterectomy?
Following a hysterectomy, you will not have periods or be able to conceive.
What is recovery like after a hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy is a major operation and there will be a recovery period before you feel back to your usual self. This will depend on the type of surgery that you have as well as your age and general health.
You are likely to be in hospital between 1 and 5 days. This will depend on whether you have a vaginal, laparoscopic or abdominal hysterectomy.
You will be advised to avoid strenuous activities and heavy lifting, especially if you’ve had abdominal surgery.
Recovery from an abdominal hysterectomy can take six to eight weeks, recovery times are shorter for vaginal or laparoscopic hysterectomies.
It is best to speak to your surgeon about when it is safe to return to work and driving, based on your individual circumstances.
What can I do to help my recovery?
Following a hysterectomy, make sure you don’t overdo it and get plenty of rest. It’s also important to drink plenty of fluids and eat lots of fruit and high fibre foods to help with regular bowel and bladder movements.
What side effects are possible following the surgery?
Following your surgery, you may experience some or all the following:
- Pain – This will be managed with pain medication via your doctor or nurse
- Nausea from the anaesthetic
- Vaginal bleeding and discharge – this can last up to six weeks
- Bowel disturbances including constipation
- Urinary tract infection – at the onset of any symptoms, contact your doctor
- Menopause symptoms – hot flushes, anxiety, weepiness, sweating
When can I have sex after a hysterectomy?
You should avoid having sex until you are no longer having vaginal discharge and your scars are healed. This will normally take around four to six weeks.
What exercise can I do following a hysterectomy?
Walking is recommended during recovery. Swimming is also fine once the wounds have healed. Avoid heavy lifting and anything too strenuous until the recovery period is over, and your surgeon has agreed it.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of concern or have questions regarding a potential hysterectomy and would like an appointment with a specialist to discuss this further, please contact us on 07307 641071 or email firstname.lastname@example.org