Emily’s Robotic Hysterectomy
daVinci Robotic Hysterectomy
Age at Surgery 68
Location: Las Vegas Nevada USA
During an MRI for an unrelated issue, it was discovered that I had two rather large ovarian cysts. I had also had an issue with occasional vaginal bleeding, many years post-menopause. So when my gynecologist strongly recommended a total hysterectomy, I was onboard with the idea immediately. I had lost a very dear friend to ovarian cancer and I did not want to leave the possibility that I would develop it also as an option. Also, my doctor and his partner are the top providers of Da Vinci robotic surgery in southern Nevada, have performed hundreds of hysterectomies, and actually train others in the procedure. So I felt very comfortable with the prospect of having them perform my surgery.
I had my surgery at a local hospital surgical center. To prepare, I leaned on my husband for help and assurance, I asked a lot of questions of friends and family (and of course, my doctor) and I joined the HysterSisters online group, whose wealth of information I accessed repeatedly both pre- and post-surgery. Once checked into the center, I was prepared for surgery and given general anesthesia, after which I remember nothing until I woke up hours later with a cup of water in my hand and a terrific urge to pee! I felt quite foggy but not in any real pain, something comparable to menstrual cramps. I was released to go home early that evening, where I was quite surprised to discover I could lie comfortably on my side to sleep. By day three, I was up and showering, making my bed, then nesting in to read, talk with friends, watch movies, and sleep!
In retrospect, I had an amazingly easy recovery. The biggest issue was probably the general brain fog I experienced for several weeks afterwards. Ibuprofen 1000s were all I needed keep any discomfort under control, and my recovery was defined more by what I didn’t experience rather than what I did: I didn’t suffer trapped gas or CO2, I didn’t suffer constipation, I felt more of a pulling or tugging sensation rather than pain… I feel very grateful to have come through this experience so easily. I was tired in the afternoons and took things slowly but now, about three months later, I can’t say I feel any after-effects of the surgery, other than a couple of hot flashes a day that I am pretty sure will eventually go away.
I am feeling very good now, looking forward to cooler weather so I can start a walking program and regain some muscle lost during my recovery. I’m very glad I had the surgery, it’s wonderful to eliminate several possible sites where trouble could have developed over the years!
Being older and well past my childbearing years made this a very different experience for me compared to someone who might still be thinking of having a child, or having more children. For me, I was just relieved that none of the issues that caused me to choose my surgery turned out to be serious. So I guess we each have to weigh what point we are at, decide if the risks or discomfort are worth the outcome, and make our choice. Of course, I also had the best assistance through this entire experience, my totally fab husband!
The good news is, having a hysterectomy can be a very positive and life-enhancing choice.