The Hysterectomy Diaries

A 42 year old's experience of hysterectomy – pre and post op


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Pre-Op – up and down and onwards …….

So I had my pre-operation assessment on Tuesday. The nurse was very nice and explained the procedure for admission, the operation itself and what happens afterwards, like having a catheter fitted and then being albe to get up the next day to go to the loo (and shower if I feel like it). I was even cheered by the news that as long as everything goes smoothly, I will only be in hospital for 2 nights. I’ve been mentally preparing (and packing) for 4-5 nights, as most things I’ve been reading have been saying this is the length of time spent in the hospital. So fingers crossed I’ll be back home by middle of next week.

Then yesterday was a strange day. I don’t know if it was reality kicking in after Tuesdays appointment or I was just getting anxious but I was tearful and feeling a bit flat. I guess this is normal. It’s not everyday you are about to have a major operation. And I’ve always been one to blub with the best of them!

So if you need to cry, then cry. It makes you feel a whole lot better to get it out.

And today I’m feeling positive again. It’s my last day at work and then a weekend of pampering and spending time with loved ones. And I’m sure a couple of glasses of champagne to toast the future (and farewell to my ovaries!)


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My Hysterectomy Journey

The Truth Between the Lines

 It’s feels like a bad word. “Hysterectomy”. Something you don’t talk about with people. Something you certainly don’t mention in front of men. It’s some sort of private thing. That privacy is perfectly fine if you need it to be, but it causes women like myself to wonder…. what is it like? What will I feel like when it’s over? Will I feel less feminine? Less sexual? Less like the girl I am.

It’s not fair. We should talk about these things. We should share with our daughters and sisters and friends. Even our male friends should understand better what it’s like. It’s ok to be afraid, nervous, or even depressed. We don’t enter into this decision lightly. It’s a last resort. When we just can’t deal with our woman parts anymore.

I am one week before my surgery. I want to share what I am thinking and feeling. Maybe…

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Rollercoaster

How did I get to here?

It still feels like a bit of a rollercoaster. After having some irregular bleeding for a couple of months, I went to see my doctor last July. I was half expecting her to say she had found some polyps or something similar. But after examining me, said that my womb felt very hard. She wanted me to have blood tests and made a referral to the gynaecologist.

The blood test results came back within a couple of days and showed that my CA127 levels were high. Despite the doctors comments that this could indicate fibroids or cysts, my fears were raised with the knowledge that it could be cancer. I kept telling myself that there’s no history of cancer in my family and that it would be fine, but the secret dread was still there.

My appointment to see the gynaecologist came quickly and again the reassurance that it was more likely to be fibroids and/or a cyst rather than anything more sinister. An appointment was made for an ultrasound scan and as suspected, this showed both a large cyst on my right ovary and fibroids. Complete relief! The consultant wanted to carry out ‘an MOT’ (his words) and remove the ovary and cyst, which could then be analyzed.

However, a second blood test showed that my CA127 levels had raised even higher. So now I needed an MRI scan. More waiting time! This showed possible signs of endometriosis, but the day of the laparoscopy would reveal all!

The gynaecologist was unable to remove the cyst and ovary, as endometriosis had resulted in a frozen pelvis, with both ovaries fixed to my uterus and part of my colon also frozen.

All in all, a bit of a mess internally. To this day, I’m still amazed that my symptoms have never been that severe. Yes, some bleeding and thinking about it, my stomach is constantly bloated, but having read some accounts of different women’s experiences with endometriosis, I consider myself quite lucky.

After another consultation, the recommendation was to have a total hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. A what? Ooopa loopa?! What does this mean? Removal of my womb, ovaries, cervix and fallopian tube.

The fibroids would just keep growing. The endometriosis would become more severe. So after a lot of thinking, I agreed.

And that’s where I am now. Just 8 months after my first trip to the doctors, I’m a week away from my operation.

Scared, but positive. Confident that I’m young and healthy enough to make a full recovery.


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Starting point

I never thought of myself as a person who would start a blog. I guess there was never anything I wanted to share on one.

But now I’m on a countdown to my hysterectomy operation (11 days to go) and I’ve been reading various websites,forums and blogs and thought, well why not?

This may end up being the ramblings of a woman on the verge of having her bits removed. But it might also be helpful to share thoughts and experiences, both for other women going through the same procedure and for me, just to get those thoughts out there!

So here goes!