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Preparing for hysterectomy – Kelly’s Story

I’m a 33 year old mother of two. For many years I have suffered heavy bleeding and had abnormal smear results which resulted in having to have laser treatment which wasn’t very pleasant. For a while things settled down, then two years ago it all started again so I asked to be sterilized.

The sterilization went well but with a bit of pain afterwards and bowel problems. Then the next test was waiting of my period to arrive to see if being sterilized had helped. It was a big NO for me. My periods became even worse and for the first two day’s every month couldn’t leave the house because it was that bad.

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In October I was told I had a polyp and that could be causing my heavy bleeding, so I had the polyp removed in a straight forward procedure and with very little affects after surgery. I had my first period and again it was horrendous. On Saturday 16th November I received a letter to attend hospital on 18th November so alarm bells started ringing thinking there must be something wrong with the polyp I’d had removed.

Monday 18th November I attended hospital to be told I have to have a full hysterectomy because I’ve got pre-cancerous cells and I’ve been lucky that they have been caught it in time. I now feel like my worlds been tipped upside down totally. I’m absolutely terrified of what lies ahead and the fact that life can change so much for me. I’ve read so much on the net that I’m terrifying myself can anyone else share there stories with me.

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in my own words book coverNow available on our online store and all other online book store’s. In My Own Words: Women’s Experience of Hysterectomy is full of many other real-life stories from women the world over.

Other people’s stories help women feel less isolated. They show that they aren’t going mad, missing the point or stupid.

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Linda Parkinson-Hardman

Transformational coach and founder of the Hysterectomy Association. Professionally I'm an information scientist who specialises in the adoption and engagement of digital technologies. I am a writer and author of nine books to date, and I've edited a further seven; phew what a lot for a Thursday afternoon :-)

This Post Has 6 Comments
  1. Hi Kelly
    I too know how you feel as the same thing happened to me 2 1/2 yrs ago. I went in for ablation for heavy periods an routine biopsies 2 weeks later I got a phone call an things went into overdrive with appointments an diagnosis of endometrial cancer but I have recovered an am doing great but I would make sure you do pelvic floor exercise when you healed as I have just been through an anterior, posterior an vault repair which was somewhat traumatic but thankfully I’m now back at work an doing well so remember there is light at the end of the tunnel. The menopause is difficult to deal with but there is some hrt that you can take make sure you get a referral to a consultant who specialises in menopause

  2. Hi Kelly,
    I noticed your comment on my facebook page and it took me back 3 years. In the summer of 2010, I had similar symptoms to you and ended up having 2 polyps removed with a cheery goodbye from the surgeon only to get the hospital recall letter a week later. As a healthcare professional, I knew this wouldn’t be good news and so phoned in to speak to the consultant to be told exactly the same news as you – pre-cancerous cells at the base of the polyp and I needed a hysterectomy. After picking myself up off the floor in shock and eating my lunch in tears, I saw the consultant a week later and was then told both ovaries needed to go too as there was no guarantee that any early dysplastic cells had not already spread and they could only tell on biopsy after the surgery so it was either go for hyst and ovaries out or just hyst and go back for ovaries out 6 weeks later if they found dodgy cells. My decision was to go for both hysterectomy and both ovaries out. I was a little older than you at 46 years old. I avoided an abdominal incision and would reassure you that the surgery was fine. Recovery for any surgery takes time and you must plan to allow this – don’t feel guilty if the house isn’t clean or your partner loads the dishwasher the wrong way (don’t they always!) but accept any help, any meals and plan to rest with your feet up. Walking is great and you can do a bit more each day. Losing your ovaries will lead to a surgical menopause which is an emotional time with hot flushes and night sweats but at your age, talk to your GP – different GP’s have various views on HRT – a good GP friend of mine gave me excellent advice on this – a younger patient will often need a higher level of HRT to cope with the symptoms of the surgical menopause but if you get the dose right, you will be fine! 3 years on and I am ok – I am still a little wary of heavy lifting, try to remember pelvic floor exercises (yawn!) and have the odd hot flush on my 1mg oestrogen but life is fine. Try to deal with one day at a time – get through the surgery – recover leisurely – try not to worry about the pathology results – if they are clear then you just need to recover – if they aren’t, your consultant will guide you through the next step but it does sound as if you are a low risk at this stage. I really hope it all goes well for you Kelly and in 3 years you can be writing to someone to tell them how good your life is after gynae surgery!

  3. Don’t worry, I went from no symptoms at all to be told I had a possible fibroid, to having a full hysterectomy within several weeks. The hospital gave me loads of info before I went in, and we’re brilliant afterwards. I was sent home 3 days later, and I found the main problem was getting in and out of bed – not having an electric adjustable bed like in hospital. Found a video online which showed me how to do it which really helped. My main problem was boredom but I did try and get plenty of sit down jobs to do. Hope everything goes ok. Best wishes Marie

  4. I’m 34 years old and have 1 daughter. I had my hysterectomy in April this year and nothing could have prepared me not for the physical effects but the emotional ones. I had my op due to endometriosis, adenomyosis and cancer cells. I know for my health I needed it done but sometimes I feel less of a woman because of it .

  5. Hysterectomy was fine, blessing of loosing heavy painful periods was great. Healing for me was slow, had infections in wound but once I got the correct antibiotics for the infection I had, it healed up well. I will say you will need to do nothing for the first few weeks and very little for a few months. Please do look after your pelvic floor muscles. Ask plenty of questions from the physio that should visit you after the op. even ask for a course of physio for your pelvic floor after you have healed sufficiently. I didn’t take this advice seriously and now 18 months post op have bladder and bowel prolapses and may face another op. I too had polyps, fibroids or whatever on both ovaries and womb so had all removed, thankfully my test came back clear but my surgeon said he had removed all just in case. Check if they are taking our ovaries too, puts you in surgical menopause but better than the alternative…..look at the benefits and try to play down any problems but do write down questions and ask, ask, ask! Xoxo

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