Pennie’s Abdominal Hysterectomy Story

Type of Hysterectomy: Total Abdominal
Age at surgery: 61
Location: Ohio

I had an endrometrial biopsy because of bleeding, and was diagnosed with a condition called complex hyperplasia with atypia. I was told by my doctor and by a lot of research I did on the subject that the condition meant there was a 40% chance I had cancer or would develop it. I didn’t explore other treatments. I did not get a second or third opinion, although I wish I had done so. I did a lot of research about my condition, and the consensus was that surgery was my best course of action. I did not suffer at all before surgery. Yes I had some bleeding but I had not completely stopped bleeding, and a few years prior was told I was still not in menopause. I just assumed that was the problem with the irregular bleeding, because my menstrual cycle had been irregular for years.

I do not remember the anesthesia used and I remained in the hospital for 6 days. I had kidney problems following my surgery and was in extreme pain and on pain pump. My blood pressure was extremely low, where usually it runs high. I was sent to ICU because it so they could monitor me constantly. My kidneys were failing. I was on a catheter, but wasn’t producing and urine, I was going into renal failure. I had dialysis, but then my kidneys rallied and I didn’t need dialysis anymore, and my kidneys have since recovered.

Constant pain and feeling very weak and tired are the important issues as I’m recovering. It has been and still is a very difficult recovery. It’s 4 and 1/2 months post surgery and I’m still in pain and swollen everyday. The only worries I had after the hysterectomy was my sex drive, since it had already declined over the years and I worried would it get worse. It has. I have no sex drive. My greatest challenge was being alone through all of it and having very little physical help or emotional support. I still haven’t returned to all activities and although my doctor says I’m fine, I’m not. Regular activities have increased a little at a time, but I’m still not back to normal.

My health has been a lot worse since the hysterectomy. I’m tired, cranky, and in more pain than before the hysterectomy. No matter how bad it’s been, I’m glad I had the hysterectomy because they did find early stage cancer, which was removed with the removal of my uterus.

Always get a second opinion or more if in doubt. Ask a lot of questions. I didn’t ask enough. Know all the facts, risks and benefits. Realize that everyone is not the same and your experience will be different then others, better or worse. If there’s any other way, don’t have a hysterectomy unless there is no choice.

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