Strength training before surgery isn’t a new concept, most surgeons for hip or knee replacements will advise a 6 week plan before surgery to help with the recovery. So why should we ignore this advice for a hysterectomy?
There are a number of different types of anaesthetic and most hysterectomies are performed while the patient is under a full anaesthetic. This will knock you out throughout the operation and you will eventually come round in the recovery room. However, this type of anaesthetic can have side effects which may include nausea and dizziness, an incredible tiredness for several days, not being able to think clearly for at least 24 hours after your surgery. It can also take several months for the anaesthetic to work its way out of your body completely (drinking plenty of water and taking enough exercise can help this enormously).
Hernia after hysterectomy is a relatively uncommon side effect of an abdominal hysterectomy. Also known as an incisional hernia it occurs because the abdominal cut weakens the muscles in the surrounding area. This creates a tender and painful bulge in the muscles surrounding the area.
Several years ago, I began a project that involved asking users of the Hysterectomy Association to tell us their own stories and experience of hysterectomy. Over the years, many stories have been submitted and it’s interesting to me to see how they have helped other women come to terms with the same, or similar issues.
I’ve just read a research report that suggests that all women should consider having their ovaries removed when they have a hysterectomy because “women who had their ovaries taken out had lower rates of ovarian cancer and were not more likely to get heart disease or a hip fracture – which had been a worry in this group because of the quick drop in hormones that happens once the ovaries are gone.” The self same report goes on to do a comparison with an earlier piece of research which “found that women who had their ovaries removed were more likely to be diagnosed with heart disease and die than women who didn’t.”
Studies have suggested that many of the patients who currently undergo a total hysterectomy by either the abdominal or laparoscopically assisted route could instead be offered a less invasive vaginal hysterectomy instead.
Researchers have suggested that women may be able to create some protection for themselves from gynaecological cancers by having their ovaries and uterus removed, if they have been diagnosed with nonpolyposis colorectal cancer or Lynch syndrome.
There is a new type of hysterectomy currently being tested in the UK which is called SILS. It is a single-port access surgery, or single-incision laparoscopic surgery. The vast majority of women in the UK and abroad who have hysterectomies, typically have the traditional, invasive abdominal surgery (Total Abdominal Hysterectomy/Abdominal Hysterectomy).
Laparoscopically Assisted Vaginal Hysterectomy (LAVH) is a procedure using laparoscopic surgical techniques and instruments to remove the uterus (womb) and/or tubes and ovaries through the vagina.