Hysterectomy is the removal of the uterus and is one of the most commonly performed gynecological surgical procedures. In the United States alone, almost 600,000 hysterectomies are performed every year. One of the major causes for hysterectomy is the presence of uterine fibroids.
Uterine Fibroids Treatment – Hysterectomy
Uterine fibroids are non-cancerous growths of the uterus that can occur in the uterine cavity, within the muscle wall, or on the outer surface of the uterus. Symptoms often include:
- Abnormal uterine bleeding, including longer periods or bleeding between periods.
- Severe pelvic pain, including pain during sexual intercourse.
- Lower back or leg pain.
- Problems with urination.
Hysterectomy is the only fibroid treatment that prevents recurrence and may provide improved quality of life for many women. What to expect after a hysterectomy greatly depends upon the woman’s clinical circumstances and the type of hysterectomy chosen.
What to Expect after a Hysterectomy
Every patient’s experience may be different, but there are some general expectations following hysterectomy:
- The recovery depends largely on the type of hysterectomy patient had. Generally, open abdominal hysterectomy results in the longest recovery times. Vaginal and laparoscopic approaches to the procedures tend to require less recovery time and may be comparatively less painful.
- Regardless of the type of hysterectomy the patient undergoes, she may require a course of pain medication and antibiotics to prevent post-surgical infections.
- Patients may not be able to lift anything heavy or have sexual intercourse for as long as six weeks.
- Hysterectomy can also have long-term co-morbidities such as incontinence or pelvic organ prolapse.
Treating Hysterectomy Side Effects
If a patient has a total hysterectomy and her ovaries are removed, hormone replacement therapy (HRT) can effectively reduce hormone-induced symptoms after the surgery. However, the woman’s age and medical history are all key factors to consider before any decision about HRT is made. HRT is absolutely contraindicated in patients with breast cancer.3
Looking For More Information On Treating Uterine Fibroids Other Than Having an
 US Markets for Gynecological Devices 2011. Millennium Research Group, Inc. 2010.
 Buttram VC Jr, Reiter RC. Uterine leiomyomata: etiology, symptomatology, and management. Fertil Steril. 1981; 36(4):433-445.
 WebMD LLC, http://women.webmd.com/hysterectomy-oophorectomy-directory, 2005 – 2013, May 16, 2013.