Does a woman need her uterus
By Judith Garber April 12, In , I was over-treated and permanently harmed by my gynecologist of 20 years. It all started with pelvic pain caused by a fairly large ovarian mass. My gynecologist expressed concern about malignancy and rushed me into surgery with the plan that an oncologist would be available to assist. The cyst and ovary were sent to pathology during surgery clinically known as a frozen section.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: I Have Endometriosis
SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Leslie's Story: Uterine ProlapseContent:
Know Your Uterus
Victorian government portal for older people, with information about government and community services and programs. Type a minimum of three characters then press UP or DOWN on the keyboard to navigate the autocompleted search results. Hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the womb uterus , with or without the cervix. The operation may also be with or without the removal of the ovaries and the fallopian tubes. The uterus is a muscular organ of the female body, shaped like an upside-down pear.
The lining of the uterus the endometrium thickens and, after ovulation, is ready to receive a fertilised ovum egg. If the ovum is unfertilised, the lining comes away as bleeding.
This is known as menstruation period. If the ovum is fertilised, the developing baby is nurtured inside the uterus throughout the nine months of pregnancy. If a woman has a hysterectomy, she will no longer have menstrual periods or be able to have a child, and will not need to use contraception. Once a woman has had a hysterectomy of any kind, she cannot become pregnant.
If the ovaries of a premenopausal woman are removed, she has had a surgical menopause. This means she will have a drop in production of the sex hormones oestrogen, progesterone and testosterone. Vaginal dryness, hot flushes, sweating and other symptoms of natural menopause may occur. Women who undergo bilateral oophorectomy removal of both ovaries usually take hormone replacement therapy also called menopause hormone therapy ,This is also known as oestrogen replacement therapy, as usually only oestrogens are required to maintain their hormone levels and prevent the long-term risks of premature menopause.
The ovaries play a major role in maintaining the female hormonal system. Their removal results in menopausal symptoms within 24 hours, oestrogen levels fall by 50 per cent. Except if a woman has cancer, doctors recommend that hysterectomy should be a procedure of last resort, when all other treatment options have failed. Some conditions that in the past have been treated with hysterectomy, now have alternative treatment options.
These include:. Fibroids are non-cancerous growths that form within the muscular walls of the uterus. However, most fibroids are small, do not cause symptoms and do not require treatment.
For those that do, treatment choice depends on the size, position, and symptoms caused by the fibroids. Heavy menstrual bleeding may be due to fibroids, adenomyosis, cancers, bleeding disorders, other medical conditions and also unknown causes. Alternative treatment to a hysterectomy for heavy bleeding may include:. Since the introduction of the levonorgestrel-releasing IUD and endometrial ablation to treat heavy or irregular periods, hysterectomy rates have reduced.
For endometriosis , alternative treatment to a hysterectomy may include hormonal therapies, surgical removal of areas of endometriosis, or a combination of both. If, after talking about all the options with your doctor, you choose to have a hysterectomy, your doctor should discuss several things with you before the operation. You will have a range of tests before your hysterectomy, including a complete blood-count test to check for problems such as anaemia deficiency in red blood cells or haemoglobin.
The operation may be performed via an incision cut in your lower abdomen abdominal hysterectomy , three to four small incisions in your abdomen laparoscopic hysterectomy , or through your vagina vaginal hysterectomy.
For an abdominal hysterectomy, the surgeon usually makes a horizontal cut along your pubic hairline your pubic hair may have been shaved around the incision. For most women, this leaves a small scar.
Some women may need a vertical midline incision in the lower abdomen, especially if the hysterectomy is for a large uterine fibroid. An abdominal hysterectomy is generally recommended when a woman has very large fibroids or cancer. For a laparoscopic hysterectomy, the surgeon inserts a telescope laparoscope to see your pelvic organs through a small incision in your navel, and makes another three or four small incisions through which other instruments are used.
Carbon dioxide gas is used to distend inflate your abdomen, like a balloon, so all of your organs can be clearly seen. The surgeon then removes the uterus, with or without fallopian tubes and ovaries, through the vagina.
If the top of the vagina is sutured stitched through keyhole incisions, the operation is called a total laparoscopic hysterectomy. If the gynaecologist stitches the top of the vagina through the vagina, it is called a laparoscopically assisted vaginal hysterectomy.
A vaginal hysterectomy is performed through an incision at the top of the vagina. It is usually performed where there is a uterine prolapse the cervix and uterus come down into the vagina, or protrude out of the vaginal entrance. With good pain relief, recovery may be similar for all forms of the hysterectomy.
Although, more care is required regarding the pelvic floor, urination and bowel function after vaginal hysterectomy. It is important to start pelvic floor and abdominal exercises within the first few weeks after surgery. These exercises strengthen the muscles in your pelvis, and help maintain normal bladder function and vaginal muscle tone.
Your doctor or physiotherapist will let you know how soon you can start these particular exercises. Be guided by your doctor, but general suggestions for the four to six-week post-operative period include:. After hysterectomy, you will no longer need contraception or have menstrual periods. If your ovaries were removed, you may experience menopause symptoms starting within a few days of your surgery.
If you were still having periods before your hysterectomy, your doctor should discuss oestrogen replacement therapy or other options with you. How long you might need oestrogen replacement therapy will depend on your age. Hysterectomy can be an effective treatment for gynaecological conditions such as fibroids, endometriosis and adenomyosis, though sometimes endometriosis may recur.
If you have had a hysterectomy to treat cancer, depending on the stage of the cancer you will need to have regular check-ups to make sure you are cancer free. You may need to have a regular vault smear test — similar to a cervical screening test but involving cells from the top of your vagina instead of the cervix.
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What kind of hysterectomy is best for you?
A hysterectomy is surgery to take out a woman's uterus, the organ in a woman's belly where a baby grows during pregnancy. After a hysterectomy, you will not be able to get pregnant. Other organs might also be removed if you have severe problems such as endometriosis or cancer.
Donna Baick says, is to understand the diagnosis and weigh your options, including what kind of procedure is the best for you. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists ACOG says the safest, least invasive and most cost-effective way to remove a uterus for non-cancerous reasons is a vaginal hysterectomy, rather than laparoscopic or open surgery. Less than a fourth of all hysterectomies are performed vaginally, according to ACOG. About two-thirds of cases are performed with a large abdominal incision, and another 12 percent are performed with special tools called laparoscopes and require a several tiny incisions.
Hysterectomy: Advantages and disadvantages of removing uterus
Victorian government portal for older people, with information about government and community services and programs. Type a minimum of three characters then press UP or DOWN on the keyboard to navigate the autocompleted search results. Hysterectomy is the surgical removal of the womb uterus , with or without the cervix. The operation may also be with or without the removal of the ovaries and the fallopian tubes. The uterus is a muscular organ of the female body, shaped like an upside-down pear. The lining of the uterus the endometrium thickens and, after ovulation, is ready to receive a fertilised ovum egg. If the ovum is unfertilised, the lining comes away as bleeding. This is known as menstruation period. If the ovum is fertilised, the developing baby is nurtured inside the uterus throughout the nine months of pregnancy.
10 Things Your Doctor Won’t Tell You About Hysterectomy
For women of reproductive age, hysterectomies are the second most often performed procedure in the U. There are several reasons why a woman might choose to have a hysterectomy. It can be because of uterine fibroids, heavy and persistent vaginal bleeding, cancer, or conditions like endometriosis. A hysterectomy is a major, life-altering surgery, so it is not a procedure that should be taken lightly.
Hysterectomy is the second most common major operation performed on women in the United States, after Cesarean section. A woman may have a hysterectomy for different reasons, including:. Hysterectomy is usually considered only after all other treatment approaches have been tried without success or contraindicated for medical reasons.
In most cases, hysterectomy, or surgical removal of the uterus, is elective rather than medically necessary. During pregnancy, a fertilized egg implants itself in the lining of the uterus, where the developing fetus is nourished prior to birth. Only about 10 percent of the more than , hysterectomies performed in the United States each year are for cancer treatment and are considered potentially lifesaving. After cesarean section , it is the second most frequently performed surgical procedure for women who are of reproductive age in the United States.
One in three women have a hysterectomy by age Each year, up to , women in the United States have a hysterectomy, meaning a surgical removal of the uterus and sometimes the cervix and supporting tissues. Once a woman has this procedure, she is no longer able to get pregnant. It is the most common non-pregnancy-related major surgery performed on women in the United States. Generally, most hysterectomies are not emergency operations, so a woman will have time to discuss with her doctor and time to think about her options. There are three categories as to why a woman may be recommended or required to have a hysterectomy:.
9 Common Reasons for Hysterectomy
Hysterectomy is the removal of uterus by surgical method. If the uterus is removed along with the cervix it is called complete hysterectomy. If the uterine body is removed leaving behind the cervix, it is called partial hysterectomy. Sometimes the ovaries, fallopian tubes and other surrounding structures are also removed. Hysterectomy is a major surgical procedure that has risks and benefits and affects the hormonal balance in the body. For these reasons hysterectomy is only recommended when all other modalities have failed.
All A-Z health topics. View all pages in this section. Female reproductive system click to expand. If your doctor recommends a hysterectomy or myomectomy to treat uterine fibroids, ask your doctor if a power morcellator will be used. Power morcellators break uterine fibroids into small pieces to remove them more easily during a laproscopic surgery.
Back to Hysterectomy. Fibroids are non-cancerous growths in or around the womb uterus. The growths are made up of muscle and fibrous tissue, and vary in size.
Replay May 8 HDLive! A hysterectomy is an operation to remove the uterus. The ovaries and other reproductive organs may be left intact, but in some cases are taken out as well. Each year US doctors perform about , hysterectomies.