Hyste-WHO? My early hysterectomy
I turn 41 today... I can't believe it. I feel 30! ...Apparently my body didn't feel 30, though.
This year, I underwent a hysterectomy, and I want to share my experience with other women who might want to know what to expect.
As a medical professional, I always tell patients not to google. So the minute I was on the surgery schedule.... I googled. LOL
A little hystory hehe
I found out from my doctor awhile back that I had a grapefruit-sized fibroid tumor in my uterus. I had this removed five years ago in order to get pregnant with my daughter, Zuri. After that, I grew two more fibroids and began having a lot of pain. I drug my feet on it for several years and then finally made the decision to undergo a hysterectomy.
I took my precious time in getting this done because I honestly just didn't want to have to have another surgery after my myomectomy (the surgical removal of fibroids from the uterus. GIRL BYE! It allows the uterus to be left in place and, for some women, makes pregnancy more likely than before. Myomectomy is the preferred fibroid treatment for women who want to become pregnant.) and C-section. I was very concerned about the downtime and the ability to get back to my kiddo and my job, but my body was just having more issues than necessary- so I decided to schedule the procedure.
Needless to say, my 4 year old keeps me REALLY active...
I decided to have a LAVH (a laparoscopically-assisted vaginal hysterectomy), using the da Vinci robot. This is also how I had my first fibroid removed. I chose to leave my ovaries and just have my uterus and cervix removed. (I mean, why evict the ovaries, right? They never did anything wrong!)
Disclaimer: this is just girlfriend advise, not medical advise. If you have any questions at all, consult your physician.
After my C-section several years ago, I was walking 5 miles only five days after surgery... Which is why I'm still not sure WHAT it was that made this recovery harder. Everyone is different! I don't know if it's because I'm older now or just that it was a bigger surgery.
I spent one night in the hospital & went home the next day. And I DEFINITELY needed help at home. I couldn't care for my 4 year old for a few days. It's not that I couldn't watch her, it was that I couldn't keep up with her. I was just really tired. Anytime I would do an activity, I would have to lay down afterwards and rest. Like literally put my feet up.
After about a week and a half of recovering, I thought it would be a great idea to go to yoga. I was feeling a lot less pain and thought it would help.
Not so much.
Working out just made the pain worse and the bleeding worse. If I could have given myself some advice from the future, I'd have told myself to:
Definitely listen to your body and take care of yourself!
Take lots of naps (which you will need), and don't push yourself too much.
I think the hardest thing about the recovery was just taking the time that my body needed to recover. I didn't feel that bad, I just was really tired and sore. I also had a lot of swelling in my abdomen that made my clothes fit differently (which SUCKS if you are into fitness & feel like you have no control). There's also spotting to prepare for. Now, for me, the bleeding lasted for about six weeks, and my doctor actually had to use silver nitrate two times to get the bleeding to stop. That didn't hurt at all and was not a big deal. My bleeding and soreness definitely got worse when I was on my feet too much during the day or worked out. I also noticed more tenderness and bloating when I pushed myself too hard.
"Are you serious? Really?!" I also just GAVE UP on buttoning my pants (especially around dinner time lol) just because of the uncomfortable swelling. Trying to be cute was NOT an option.
Based on MY individual experience, I would personally recommend that anyone looking at this procedure try to take 4 weeks off from working out and 6 weeks off from lifting. I didn't follow this advice and definitely went back to work too quickly.
One really needs at least 2-3 weeks off of work.
If your job is physical, just take off 6 weeks.
Treat yourself with the love and respect that your body deserves if it's carried you to this point.
Make sure you have help with kids if you have any, and plan ahead! You can still be mom... just not as "super" involved as before.
All in all, I can say it was totally worth it. My pain is finally gone, and I am so happy to be done with my uterus and all of her issues! BYE FELICIA
What about you ladies? Have you ever had or contemplated this procedure for yourself or a loved one?