Bridget’s Abdominal Hysterectomy
Age at Surgery 45
Location: Ripon, CA
I had an of abdominal hysterectomy on June 13 of this year. It was my second hysterectomy because I had a mass that was covering part of my uterus and it was not completely removed the first time. I ended up with an abdominal plus an exploratory laparotomy because the mass grew to the size of a watermelon and caused other problems. I am currently using a catheter because they had to cut my bladder to remove the large fibroid and the fistula did not cure itself as hoped. I was referred to a specialist at UCSF after two other doctors were unable to successfully treat the issue. This has been a five year long journey and has been completely miserable. I’m hoping to be back at work by October or November now that I need bladder repair surgery.
My surgery was done at UCSF Mission Bay by a certified OB/GYN oncologist. I was in the hospital for six days due to the unforeseen issues and the fact that I had to have three transfusions during and after the surgery. I was under general anesthesia as well as an epidural. I hated the epidural and I hope to avoid it during my bladder repair surgery. Overall I had an excellent experience at UCSF and I feel incredibly grateful to have been referred there. I definitely feel like that was the best place for me.
The important issues during recovery for me were catheter care and how soon I can have the bladder repair surgery. I was not released to my normal activities even now but my doctor has allowed me to return to some of them including light exercise at the gym but I still have a weight lift restriction of 25 pounds and probably will until after my second surgery which will probably be in October by a urologist. I do have worries about life after hysterectomy including bladder control because it was an issue even before all of my complications from the surgery.
I am definitely glad that I had my hysterectomy but unfortunately it caused more problems and I definitely was not prepared for things like having a catheter for three or four months at such a young age.
The advice I would give to another woman having a hysterectomy is not to let others experiences scare you out of it. Make sure you get two or three opinions but ultimately you have to make the decision that’s right for you. Although my situation is a little bit of a horror story it is not the norm.