Hysterectomy reduces risk of cancer and heart disease

Researchers in the United States have found that women who have a hysterectomy that also removes the ovaries have a reduced risk of developing ovarian cancer, other cancers, and heart disease.  Surprisingly, the rate of hip fractures (due to osteoporosis – an expected risk of ovarian removal) did not increase either.

The data comes from the Women’s Health Initiative study of over 25,000 women who had a hysterectomy were post-menopausal, aged over 50 and under 79 and who did not have a family history of ovarian cancer. 56% of the women had their ovaries removed and 79% had taken HRT.

The women were followed for between five and seven years and were monitored for ovarian cancer, heart disease and hip fractures.  Ovarian cancer was found in one in 300 women of the women that just had the removal of the uterus (a hysterectomy), however those who had their ovaries removed as well, found that the risk reduced to one in 500.  However, other studies have shown the opposite effect, at the end of the day it will need more investigation.



  1. It can as all cancers can cause secondary cancers in other parts of the body. But, it is one of the reason many women have mastectomies if they are at a greater risk of breast cancer – it doesn’t remove their risk altogether but with the breast tissue gone, it reduces that risk significantly.

  2. Had my hysterectomy done on 6 July 2010. It has taken me almost a year to feel ‘normal’ again – where my energy levels are up to what they were before. All in all, a very successful operation, and no regrets so far for undergoing the process.

  3. “women…who have a hysterectomy that also removes the ovaries have a reduced risk of developing ovarian cancer”. What a breakthrough. Here’s a breakthrough of my own based on absolutely no research whatsoever: “people who have double leg amputations have a reduced risk of ingrown toenails”.

  4. I was shocked to read the above article re ovarian cancer when you have had your ovaries removed. Can this really still happen?

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