Karen’s Robotic Hysterectomy
daVinci Robotic Hysterectomy
Age at Surgery 62
Location: Salt Lake City
In February of 2018, I started postmenopausal bleeding. Usually, it was light and tolerable, but still abnormal. I contacted my Primary Care Physician, and he referred me to a gynecologist . . . who could see me in about 3 weeks! About two weeks in, I had an hour of extremely heavy bleeding, and so we went to the Emergency Room (Happy Valentines Day!). From there, things moved quickly. The gynecologist fit me that day, referred my to an gynecological oncologist in SLC, and my surgery was scheduled for April 2. I had a total robotic assisted (vaginal) hysterectomy. I have to say, recovery was quick! I was a full time teacher and back in the classroom 3 weeks later, and feeling better than I had in a LONG time.
Unfortunately, the biopsy results were not so great: Stage 2 Ovarian Cancer. I’ve retired, just started chemotherapy, and the outlook is good. I’m optimistic and feeling alright.
My hospital experience was very good. I was under general anesthesia for the procedure, and was “asleep” from 9:00AM to about 3:30PM. The nurses taught me how to get out of bed, and I was encouraged to walk as often as I felt I could. I spent the night in the hospital and traveled 3 hours home the next day quite comfortably.
My recovery from surgery was quite comfortable. I had plenty of sick leave, so I had no worries beyond recovering. My husband got me a bench for the shower which helped a LOT, and he took excellent care of me. My biggest challenge: rolling over in bed! My doctor said that I could return to work, minus any lifting, anytime I wanted in the range of 2 to 6 weeks. I took the extra, third week just because my job required me to move from school to school and to stand up.
I feel great!! Other than the cancer part, I’m in much better shape than I was in the months leading up to my surgery. For some reason, I have been able to loose 30 pounds in the 11 weeks since my surgery – weight that would not budge before. That has reduced my hypertension, and increased my energy. And, yes, I am glad I had a hysterectomy, although it was absolutely necessary as it turns out,
Disclaimer: a hysterectomy is NOT a diet plan!! I’ve been eating healthy, and I attribute the weight loss to that.
Listen to your doctor. A hysterectomy is not an elective surgery. If your doctor (and as many other doctors as you need for additional opinions) says you need to have one, then go forward knowing you’ll have all the support you need to get through this. When I told a few friends that I was having mine, I could not believe the number of women who came forward to share their stories and to reassure me. In my case, my hysterectomy likely saved my life by getting the cancer OUT before it could escape my reproductive system. Best wishes to all!