Kathy’s Hysterectomy Story

Type of Hysterectomy: Abdominal Partial Hysterectomy (Kept Ovaries)
Age at surgery: 47
Location: Pennsylvania

I had my hysterectomy because when I had an MRI for my back they found a very large fibroid tumor, and a few small ones. I had been anemic for a few years, and had a vaginal exam about 1 month prior to the MRI and the Gyn did not feel the tumor. It was about 15 cm by 15 cm and I can’t believe she didn’t find it. I went to a surgical oncologist for an opinion about what to do about it after the MRI for my back pain.

I had to have a colonoscopy the day before surgery because I was so anemic they didn’t want to miss something bleeding in my colon before they opened me up to remove my uterus. so I was admitted the next morning. Had general anesthesia. My surgery took about 4 hours because the fibroid was so large. I stayed in the hospital for 4 days.

I would say overall my recovery was good. The first week was pretty bad. the pain was more than I expected, and I tried to go without pain meds for too long. I would suggest taking the pain meds every 4 hours as the dr prescribes. Don’t let the pain take over, its very hard to get on top of it then. After getting on the pain meds every 4 hours the pain was very tolerable. My only issue was after about 7 days of pain meds, i felt weepy and very agitated. By then I could take the pain meds with more hours between doses and then stopped taking them on the 8th day after surgery. I was released from the surgeons care at my 6 week post op visit.

I was still anemic and needed an endoscopy about 7 weeks post op. they found some polyps in my small intestine so they removed them and are hoping now that my anemia will resolve. In the mean time I have been having iron infusions since surgery. I also had the iron infusions pre surgery for 6 weeks. I am still experiencing a bit of pain in one particular area in my lower belly when I walk too much. but its not pain that needs meds, I just need to rest and sit down for a while. Im definitely glad the operation is behind me, and once the anemia has resolved I know I will be so glad I had the hysterectomy. I don’t mind the no period at this time in my life either!! I have not gone through menopause and the surgery didn’t send me into menopause either since my ovaries were left in.

I was happy with my decision to see a surgical oncologist. Everyone was pretty sure I didn’t have cancer, but I felt very comfortable with them doing the surgery since they do this all the time and know what they are looking at while doing the procedure. If I could have had it done laproscopically, I would have loved to do that, but everything they had to take out was huge. So I trusted the oncologists advice and felt good about him doing the surgery. I think the worst is just waiting for the surgery. After its over, its over and all you have to do is heal. Slow and steady…follow ALL the doctors advice and don’t push yourself. Make sure your family knows this as well. Its important to have support at home.

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