I’m worried about having a hysterectomy

Question: I’m really worried about having a hysterectomy.Β  I don’t know anybody that has had one and am frightened by the thought of having everything removed as I have heard such negative stories.

Answer: Firstly let me reassure you that it is perfectly normal to feel worried, and even frightened by the prospect of a hysterectomy so you are certainly not alone in that.Β  Secondly, it is important to remember that every woman’s experience of hysterectomy is unique to her and whilst others can give you the benefit of their experience, it is not necessarily going to be the same as yours.Β  How you experience a hysterectomy will depend on a huge range of factors that may, or may not, be within your control.

To help you feel more confident that you are making the right decision whether to have surgery or not, I would recommend reading as much information as you possibly can from the website and then joining in on the forums where you can talk to other women who are going through exactly the same thing you are right now.

About the author:Linda Parkinson-Hardman

If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got. So, if you want something about your life experience and journey to change we need to talk. With two decades experience as a transformational counsellor, coach, women's health advocate and change management consultant it's likely I've already helped someone just like you already.

71 comments

  1. Sweetheart, if he’s cheating on you he’s not worth keeping around. Love yourself enough to let him go and take care of you. No man is worth feeling the way he’s making you feel. You deserve honesty. My husband had an emotional affair with a coworker and it wrecked our marriage. I stayed and it was 8 years of torture. Had he actually slept with the woman it would have been worse. My self worth was so low that I actually attempted suicide. Don’t let a man make you feel that worthless. Trust me there are other men in this world that will love you and value you just as you are.

  2. im booked in to have a TAH on 13th October im so scared but i know i need it done but at the moment my head is not in the right place as i have just discovered my husband of 27 years is having an affair with his work partner we have been together since we were 16 i need this op but dont know what to do he does not know that i know he is cheating on me im to scared to lose him

  3. Hi I’m in the same situation. I also had blood clots. How did your surgery turn out. Any clots?

  4. Hi

    I am due to have a hysterectomy in 6 days – been told my fibroid has taken a rapid growth with possible sarcoma. I am 40, 41 in Nov – I have came to terms with the fact that I won’t have children(I don’t have any at present). In 2012 I had a DVT which also resulted in multiple blood clots on my lungs – I have told my surgery will be riskier cause of this – terrified of the surgery and getting another DVT ?

  5. Hi Karen,

    I’m in pretty much the same boat as you although I haven’t had an MRI, due to have my TAH on 1st sept (4 days.. Eek!) due to having 2 Lletz treatments which worked but the bad cells are deeper than they can reach. Was offered cone or hysterectomy and opted for hysterectomy. Feeling very nervous but hopefully it’s the right decision. Good luck x

  6. Hi I’m 45
    I’m having a full hysterectomy on the 8th September due to having canceres cells
    Only found out 2 weeks ago since then I’ve had blood tests scans MRI and it’s all abit fast for me still trying to get my head around it
    Feeling worried about the operation and the after affects.
    Karen x

  7. Cancer is pretty rare so it’s entirely possible that this is not the case – however, you need to set your mind at rest by getting checked out.

  8. As of late been reading about hysterectomies as I have struggled since my 20’s with fibroids, heavy periods and lately irregular bleeding which makes me think I am or have developed some sort of cancer. I am 38 was blessed with one angel, I’m constantly crying and trying to make a decision on removing my uterus and be done with it and child bearing. Am I overreacting by seeing all these issues as signs of cancer developing? Did anyone find themselves in the same tormenting fear? Would a hysterectomy help?
    Ale
    Canada

  9. Whether you go through the menopause or not will depend on whether you have your ovaries removed. There’s no reason why you should have problems with hairiness or losing it either.

  10. I am having a total abdominal hysterectomy, removing both overies. I am extremely nervous about the surgery, recovery time, and menopause. Does menopause begin immediately? Is there something prescribed that can greatly assist with the effects of menopause?
    Help please?

  11. I’m 37 yrs old and I’m thinking about having a hysterectomy done due to me having severe pmdd. So, severe that I’ve more then several times try to commit suicide. I’m afraid to have it done but I know it’s the only way to feel whole again. I’ve been living in hell since I was 12 yrs old. I just want to know will I go through menopause and/or start growing hair in places that I shouldn’t. Or If I will start to lose my hair?

  12. If the ovaries are removed you’ll go through the menopause again as you’ll be losing the remaining hormones they have been continuing to produce!

  13. I am 57 years old and am having a hysterectomy next week. I really want to take my ovaries out just so I won’t worry all the rest of my life! the Dr. says he would keep them, I have already gone through menopause!

  14. I’m having a vaginal hysterectomy but I’m having second thoughts. I was thinking about asking my doctor for other options. I’m scared about going thru the surgery and what will happen after the surgery.

  15. I had a total abdominal hysterectomy 2 weeks ago.Feel ok a few twinges ,I’m quite an active independent person so am finding hard to not overdo it,Like others I was scared of anasectic but it was fine.I was up and out off bed day after op,home 2 days later!Also I’m concerned about sex ,if it’s gonna hurt or be the same,it’s not something you can go round asking people,lol

  16. Hi I’m 38 and had an abdominal hysterectomy with retention of ovarys best decision I ever made! it is normal to feel so scared and unsure that the decision you are making is right but I am 3 weeks post op and yes at times I have had pain but nowhere near as bad as I anticipated after years of suffering with terrible period pains, bloating, clotting, anaemia I now feel I’m on the road to recovery at last and feeling better every day it’s worth a little discomfort I can now look forward to living again!!

  17. I think the problem is that surgery (of any sort) is more risky in people who are overweight and most surgeons will avoid it if possible. How much the fibroids are contributing to your weight though won’t be known until you’ve had the surgery. It’s a catch 22 situation I think and perhaps it’s time to have a chat with say a personal trainer at the local gym or a dietician.

  18. Hi Laura

    I have just joined this website and saw your post.

    If you haven’t seen your consultant since the last time, have you discussed the prospects of having a prolapse repair?

    Good luck,

  19. Hi,

    I’m 44 and discovered October 2012 after having a hysteroscopy, that I have two very large submucosal uterine fibroids making my uterus the size of a 5 month pregnancy. I have been suffering from very heavy periods, pain and anaemia which is getting worse every month. I am housebound for one day a month due to heavy bleeding, feeling weak and flooding.

    I feel my consultant is messing me about, not willing to do hysterectomy until I lose some weight, fair enough I say. I am trying, doing WeightWatchers, light exercise, plus taking Orlistat (anti obesity drug).

    I have been prescribed Iron tablets for anaemia. Sometimes I feel to do the surgery on myself the way I feel at at times.

    I am following my weight loss programme to the T. However, first week lost 4lb, second week gained 1/2 lb and third week stayed the same. I feel frustrated, as I feel they wont do op until I lose more weight.

    I feel that the fibroids are growing and adding to my weight gain and I also think I am gaining fluid.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Thanks

  20. Hi there!! I have got the same as you had and have got my op on thursday this week!! Glad to hear that yours went ok as I am so nervous about it all!! so glad I read your commen!! thankyou Cal x

  21. hi, i am due to see a consultant after my doctor referred me for a prolapse. He wants me to have a hysterectomy as he said is a more permanent result. I am 44, already had my tubes and ovaries out and on HRT. I am really stressed and dont know whats for the best, but i want something done about it. Has anyone got any suggestions on whats for the best?

  22. Hi, I’m having an abdominal hysterectomy in 3 days and I’m all over the place πŸ™ I’ve got endemitriosis and having the marina coil, Hrt patches and injections has not helped….I have a very supportive partner but I just can’t talk to him… Help x

  23. please can u tell me as i have had 2 c sections many years ago, r u cut on the same line ?? that is my biggest worry

  24. hi im having a hysterectomy on the 22.1.13 im a single parent with a 11 year old son im really frightened but have know one to talk too

  25. Hi Elaine,

    I had a Laparoscopic Hysterectomy, ovaries and all this past Friday. I’m 44 and am trying to read everything I can get my hands on about HRT. I am also reaching out to all my friends and family asking for guidance. I am reluctant to start taking the Estrogen I have been prescribed. I’m tempted to ride out the impending menepause to see if I really need hormone replacement or not. What did you do? Your guidance is appreciated.
    Steph

  26. I am due to go into hospital 2nd July 2012 and the only thing that is really worrying me is the anesthetic .. how did yours go?

  27. Hi Elaine,
    I am due to have a hysterectomy and an anterior prolapse repair on 2nd July 2012, I am absolutely terrified! I am having it done privately and although I know the care will be good, I am worried about how I will cope when I get home. I am also worried about the anesthesia, what if it goes wrong and I don’t wake up? I am really having second thoughts about it, but I know it has to be done if I want my life back! How long did it take you to recover fully?

  28. There’s no reason why you can’t take the job but you may need to change your start date – perhaps a chat with occupational health might be beneficial.

  29. hi, im 33 and have just been told i have got to have a full hysterectomy in 2 weeks time.
    I dont have any children so am obviously gutted,not only that i am due to start a new job in 3 months time as a prison officer, will i be able to still take it as some of the stories i have heard are frightening me, i just feel in shock still and am worried about the recovery?

  30. i had a Laparoscopic Assisted Vaginal Hysterectomy i had horrible periods miagrains and its all over with i feel great i was up and about in a week with just little cramping. i am back to work its been 4 weeks now i feel so much better .

  31. I am having vault repair and hysterectomy in two weeks time. Generally I am a fairly brave women but I am very nervous waiting for the operation. I would like to hear how any of you felt after the operation and how long it took to come back to normal. will life be very different and restricted even after 6-8 weeks.

  32. Dear Elaine

    I read your email today. I am going back to the consultant tomorrow. I am terrified of having the operationa dn how t will effect me physically and mentally. I have a 10 cm fibroid on the outside of my womb and I also have a complex cyst on my left ovary. I am being offered I beleive a partial hysterectomy which will mean my other ovary will stay. However I am so scared of the consequences of the operation. I am when I have my periods barely able to function physically and my brain is mush! The pain is unbelievable but I am still frightened.

    How did the recovery go for you? Was there anything that helped you?

    How did you feel mentally?
    How do you feel pysically now that you have recovered?

    Thank you for reading this and listening. My operation is in March but I just feel so illprepared…. Ahhhhhh

  33. Hi Lisa, by now you may have had surgery and hopefully it all went well for you. Sometimes it’s time to allow others to take the strain and that this is your opportunity to look after yourself instead.

  34. I am 42in and am scheduled for total hysterectomy on Monday. I am worried. I have always been the one to take care of others and to know i will be in hospital for 4thanksgiving days and not there for my family is hard. I am worried about about you the surgery. And can’t talk to anyone. The doctor is not sure what all she will find. I just want to quit hurting all the time. Help me please.

  35. By now you will have had had your hysterectomy Joy and should be home and starting the road to recovery. I’m not sure what information I can give you at this stage though.

  36. Am 44 and having a total hystrectomy in two days but am so worried about the after effects especially the pain. I have been having very painfull periods and bleeding heavily, my consultant said i have multiple fibroids on the uterus the biggest measuring 7. Unfortunately i had one child who passed away 2 years ago. Am really confused please help

  37. Hi Nic,

    Sorry not come back to you only just got back on website,the gynocologist told me i would go on it straight away,really getting nervous now feel like cancelling we ahve so many issues with buisness with staff etc,i worried about weight gain to its all a bit of a mess. Your right though no more periods no more terrible pain and hopefully better moods. Thats weierd having it the same day good luck to you to and speedy recovery lets stay in touch. Thank you again. Deborah xx

  38. Hi Deborah

    I’m 37 and also due my hysterectomy with removal of both ovaries on 16th nov.
    Who told you about the HRT? The gynoclosgist or your doctor? Just really concerned as this hasn’t been discussed with me at any point!!

    I totally understand what your saying about the sex issue …. Probably only one of the things I’m really worried about.
    The operation itself well to be honest I really can’t wait πŸ™‚

    Hope everything goes well for you and your soon on the road to recovery

    Nic πŸ™‚

  39. Im due to have a hystercetomy and ovaries removed on the 16.11.2011,due to painfull periods and endometrosis like everyone else really scared i also run my own buisness as a chef and landlady added pressure to get better quickly. I ahve been told i will go on hrt straight away i am 45 . Also worried i will never feel like having sex anymore or just feel not complete. I really am having second thoughts but do not want to carry on with all the pain amd moods i have only ahve one good week in four any advice please.

  40. I’m 44 years old and due to have a full hysterectomy in 2 days time. I have a 9.6cm cyst on my right ovary and its not the first – a similar sized one removed 13 years ago. I have suffered with cysts for the past 14 years and have had enough. I asked for both ovaries removed and my consultant said I may as well have the whole lot out. I’m more nervous about the anaesthetic than anything else and also want to know peoples thoughts on HRT. Not sure whether to look into an alternative. Any ideas?

  41. Thank you so much for something positive! I am very anxious and all I seem to read is negative and frightening. I wanted you to know that taking the time to leave your comment has been so helpful.

  42. I had a hysterectomy – uterus and ovaries – five weeks ago and am really glad I did. I had suffered from fibroids for 3 years and the bleeding was terrible. It could happen totally without warning at work, walking in the street and just lying on the sofa! The practicalities of dealing with it was awful and I wish I had gone for the op earlier.
    I was home within four days and aside from the first two weeks have had no real pain at all.
    Anyone who wants to ask a question please send an email and I will try to help. I live in London and had the op NHS.

  43. I think you’ll need to speak to your gynaecologist as only they will be able to advise on what the policy is within the hospital you having the surgery at.

  44. Hello, i am due to have a total Hysterctomy next week, the only thing is, my period is due around this time, can i still have the surgery done?

  45. The easiest and quickest way to relieve both fear and pain is to be aware of everything that will happen before, during and after the op. This is because when you are informed nothing comes as a shock and you’ll be surprised at how much your stress levels will reduce. My suggestion is to read EVERYTHING you can and talk to our ladies on the forums who are incredibly supportive and helpful. πŸ™‚

  46. Hi i have been told that i need a full hysterectomy, due to the fact i have got conjested pelvic syndrome. which is vericos veins all inside on all my womens organs. I have to have the depo injections to stop my periods cause its so bad, and i am in constant pain with it. Im terrified of the op, and all the after effects. The added fact that i dont recover well , and always have complications, if there is side effects i always get them ,im so scared. I know i need it or have a life of pain. PLEASE HELP.

  47. You can certainly request an appointment with your GP to have a chat about it, and then when you sign the consent form you simply have to ensure that you note the decision down.

  48. Hi, I’m scheduled for a total abdominal hysterectomy, maybe with removal of ovaries, in July. I have endometriosis and fibroids with all the joy they bring! I have been unable to speak with the surgeon and the clinics are so busy, I can only discuss it with a nurse at the pre-op assessment.

    Emotionally I am a mess at the moment. I’ve read everything I can on the web and am happy with my decision for the tah, but I just don’t know about the ovaries. I really want to speak to my surgeon to discuss it fully – can I insist on an appointment on the NHS? Does anyone know? I don’t want to cause a fuss but at the moment I feel I might just back out completely.

    Thanks in advance.

  49. I am also 36 an having a total hysterectomy on the 11 July due to heavy periods, I have in the past also had the mirena coil and also womb ablation which both have failed. Im retaining my overies but would like them removing due to a family history of overian cancer which effected both my mum and my grandma.
    My Consultant says because of my age he will not remove my overies as this will but me into the menapause almost immediatley. Is they anyone that also had a total hysterectomy at my age where their overies were removed.

  50. I am also 36 an having a total hysterectomy on the 11 July due to heavy periods and also the mirena coil and ablation not working im retaining my overies but would like them removing due to a family history of my grandma and mum having overian cancer.

  51. I am having a total abdominal hysterectomy on 9th May due to heavy and painful periods. I am apprehensive about the operation although looking forward to solving the problem as nothing else has really helped (medication, contraceptive pills or endometrial ablation) once and for all. I will be retaining my ovaries if they are healthy as at just 36 I won’t want to go through a surgical menopause, but having discussed all options with my surgeon so don’t feel too bad about making this decision together with her.

    I just want other peoples opinions as to what they think and any tips on how to look after myself before and after the op.

  52. As long as you feel you’ve made an informed choice based on having enough information then you should be fine, if you don’t feel you’ve been able to do this though then reading some more will probably help.

  53. i am having a full hysterectomy on 1/10/11 i am very scared i have not had a period for 2 years they found a complex cyst on my left ovary i chose to have evrything taken out i hope i am making the right decion

  54. Hi Kerry, it could be either really and it would be well worth having a blood test to check oestrogen levels because (although it’s not accurate) it’s a good indicator that things are as they should be or not. Whether you retained your ovaries or not, you had a 50% chance of going through the menopause within 5 years of surgery and 2 years early anyway.

  55. I had a total abdominal hysterectomy 5 weeks ago due to heavy periods and fibroids. Unfortunately following my op it was discovered i had multiple blood clots on my lungs, possibly as a result of the abdominal surgery. I have been put on warfarin for 6 months. I felt fine until last week when i suddenly felt sad and cried over little things. I am worried that i am going through the menopause now (my ovaries were retained). Or perhaps it is me just coming to terms with my operation and blood clots?

  56. Hi I’m 32 years old and had a total abdominal hysterectomy 6 weeks ago due to adenomyosis and very severe migraines. It was the best decision of my life, I feel so much better now!
    I’m still taking it as easy as I can (well.. I have got 4 boys!) I’ve just been getting the odd twinge now and again.
    The op was much better than I expected and the pain relief was really good.
    My scar is just the same, I’ve had 3 C-sections too.
    Just make sure that when you get home you don’t do too much, have friends and family take care of you for a bit and you will be fine πŸ™‚

  57. I am scheduled to see my surgeon either Mr Kalu or Mr English. My heart goes out to all the women in my position i no how alone i feel and scared. Worried scar tissue could be worse after operation but this is my last chance hotel! My future is in the hands of my surgeon and my bodys ability to heal and god! Keep hearing good and bad stories completely confused. All the best to everyone going through this.

  58. Hi Briany,

    Have you had your op. Am waiting for mine and am going through all the thoughts and worries as yourself.

    Can you tell me how it was for you?

    Sue

  59. Please don’t worry about how you feel, it’s perfectly normal to feel apprehensive before surgery and most women feel similar sorts of fear, you aren’t alone by any means. It might be an idea though to talk to your gynaecologist and anaesthetist to let them know how frightened you are, as they will be able to help put your mind at rest too.

  60. I am having a full hysterectomy in one week. I dont know what to do with myself. I am crying every night with fear. I already had an exploratory under general anaesthetic and did not know a thing. The pain afterwards was quickly controlled. I want this procedure but it mostly seems unreal. I dont know how to get through this week, cannot think of anything else and sometimes feel I cannot face what might come afterwards. I have only heard positive stories from friends who are pleased with the outcome but I fear the anaesthetic not working and unbearable pain afterwards. I am not a brave person.

  61. Hi Sharon

    I am having hyserectomy 20 May and i feel same Had anemia because bleeding so bad but feel fine now doc put me on hormones
    Loks like you should have had your op now would be interested to hear how you feel post op about your decision

    Pauline

  62. Hi

    I am scheduled to have a hysterectomy on 22 April. My specialist is unsure how she will carry out this operation until she investigates on the day! The thing is, when I am having a period and feeling anemic I am convinced the op is for me, however on the other 2/3 weeks I am unsure…… help! It is such a major op with such major consequences to changes to my body – did anyone else feel like this?

    Sharon

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