Stephanie’s Robotic Assisted Hysterectomy

Type of Hysterectomy: Robotic assisted total (ovaries left)
Age at surgery:28
Location: PA

I had adenomyosis for at least 2 years untreated due to lapse in health insurance. After the birth of my first child I went on merina. I had terrible side effects from it so I had it removed. My periods were crazy from the first one after the removal. I got pregnant with my son after 3 months of trying birth control pills. After having my son I had my tubes tied when he was 3 months old (ob who delivered wouldn’t do it at birth). My periods started coming regularly when my son was 6 months old. Right away, my periods were terrible. I bled like crazy and had terrible cramps. When my son was a year old I was to get an ablation, but lost insurance due to my husband losing his job about 20 days before the surgery date. Over the next 2 years my periods went from terrible to worse than terrible! I went from bleeding 7 days to bleeding 10 days.. My cramping started 3 or 4 days before the bleeding and lasted 3 to 4 days longer than the bleeding. I passed golf ball sized clots and had to “stack”pads just to sleep at night. I had coverage through the local hospital to see the doctor but not enough coverage to have any procedures done. I was offered merina again but refused. I was offered birth control pills but it was recommended not to take them because I smoked. I was offered the depo shot but was told it wasn’t a great option either. So I was basically sent home to be miserable every month.
By miserable I mean I begged my husband on a regular basis to just cut me open and take my uterus out. I wanted a hysterectomy so badly. I just wanted to be able to chase my kids instead of spending half the month unable to move due to the pain. I was only taking over the counter pain meds.

When I finally got insurance again (almost 2 years to the day from when I lost it) the first thing I did was schedule a preop appointment for my ablation. The doctor sent me for an ultrasound first and then I was scheduled to go upstairs for my appointment. I remember asking the ultrasound tech if she could see anything that would give the doctor reason to remove it all! When I got upstairs and saw the doctor he said I had adenomyosis and I needed a hysterectomy. I instantly was scared to death and told him I had to talk to my husband first. (Mommy brain kicked in and I was worried about how I would take care of my kids for a 6 week recovery time) I was told the hysterectomy was the only option due to how bad the adenomyosis was at that point. After calling my husband I scheduled the surgery.

I had general anesthesia, and the last thing I remember before surgery was getting versed (I couldn’t have it when I had my tubal due to breastfeeding my son) . I was the first surgery of the day and told the doctor I had 2 kids at home. I was going home that day if at all possible to prevent them from being any more upset then they already were. I came out of surgery around lunch time. I was told I had to use the bathroom and eat something before being able to go home. I was not in pain when I first woke up and remember coming upstairs and moving myself from one bed to the other. I only have one scar because the surgery was done through one entry point. I tried eating chicken strips and fries (terrible idea after surgery felt like I was eating saw dust) and told my husband to get me a salad with as much ranch dressing as he could (had no trouble eating that) drank 3 big cups of water. I tried to go to the bathroom a few times but was unable. When I finally went the nurse said I over filled the catch thing. When the doctor finally came to see me post op I again told him I wanted to go home. I had done what was needed and there was no other reason I couldn’t leave. He agreed. When I went into the bathroom to change my clothes I thought I heard the nurse tell me I had to walk myself out the hall to leave (so I did). It was a pretty long hall. At the other end I didn’t feel very well and nearly threw up. They offered me medicine for the nausea but told me I would have to spend the night. I refused and came home. (I threw up a mile from my house on the 40+ mile trip home.)

Despite telling the hospital I was allergic to adhesive they used steri strips on my incision. Needless to say within 2 days I was in so much pain and felt like my skin was burning off. I removed my strips that day despite being told to leave them on longer. I could not handle the pain anymore.I had my surgery on a Tuesday and my friend came to sit with me and my son the first 2 days so my husband could go back to work. My sister-in-law came on Friday. By Monday I refused to have anyone else come. I resumed all my normal housework except for vacuuming at the first week. I didn’t vacuum until probably a month post surgery. I had a very easy recovery at that point and I was so excited to be out of pain. I went into surgery in more pain than I came out because my period was due the next day. Doctor said I could drive as soon as I was not taking the prescribed pain meds (i didnt take any since I wasnt in nearly the pain I was before at that point). Since I’m a stay at home mom he said I could resume my daily activities as soon as I felt able, with the exception of lifting more than 20 lbs. The greatest challenge for me was not being able to pick up my kids.

Post hysterectomy has been great. I have my ovaries so I still get cravings for chocolate, tired the middle of every month and have slight cramping the beginning of every month. Doctor says that is because of the ovaries still doing their job. I am so glad to have had my hysterectomy. Having it allowed me to be a mom again and not have half the month in extreme pain.

Follow your gut. If you feel like it’s not the right solution for you then don’t do it. Get a second opinion. When I was offered mine (after the initial shock) I was so glad to have a light at the end of the tunnel. I never looked back despite my age.

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