A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure that removes the uterus. You lose the ability to become pregnant and no longer menstruate. Reasons for this surgery include abnormal bleeding, uterine prolapse, fibroids and cancer. Recovery usually takes four to six weeks, depending on the type of surgery you have.
What is a hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the uterus, most likely the cervix. Depending on the reason for the surgery, a hysterectomy may involve the removal of surrounding organs and tissues, such as the fallopian tubes and ovaries. The uterus is where the baby grows during pregnancy. The endothelium is the blood you shed during menstruation. You lose the ability to get pregnant and won’t get your period after a hysterectomy.
What are the different types of hysterectomy?
Your health care provider will discuss the type of hysterectomy needed, depending on your condition. This will determine if the fallopian tubes and/or ovaries need to be removed.
1. Total hysterectomy: removal of the uterus and cervix while leaving the ovaries.
supracervical hysterectomy: removal of only the upper portion of the uterus, leaving the cervix.
2. Complete hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy: removal of the uterus, cervix, fallopian tubes (salpingectomy) and ovaries (oophorectomy). If you haven’t experienced menopause, having your ovaries removed will trigger menopausal symptoms.
3. Radical hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy: removal of the uterus, cervix, fallopian tubes, ovaries, upper part of the vagina, some surrounding tissues and lymph nodes. This type of hysterectomy is done when you have cancer.
Why is a hysterectomy performed?
Health care providers perform hysterectomies to treat:
>> Abnormal or severe vaginal bleeding that cannot be controlled by other treatment methods.
>> Severe menstrual pain that is not controlled by other treatment methods
>> Leiomyomas or uterine fibroids (noncancerous tumors).
Increased pelvic pain associated with the uterus but not controlled by other treatments.
>> Uterine prolapse (a uterus that has “fallen” into the vaginal canal due to weak support muscles) that can lead to urinary incontinence or difficulty having a bowel movement.
>> Cervical cancer, uterine cancer, or abnormalities that may lead to cancer, to prevent cancer.
>> Conditions associated with endometriosis such as hyperplasia, recurrent uterine polyps, or adenomyosis.