If you’re considering removing your uterus, here’s what you need to know about hysterectomies. If you have fibroids or adenomyosis, you may have heard you need a hysterectomy (the complete removal of the uterus.) But, in many cases, you have other treatment options, so it’s important to research all your choices.
After all, 44% of Americans don’t know what’s really involved in this procedure. So, if you are seriously considering surgery, here are three important things you need to know about hysterectomies.
What You Need to Know About Hysterectomies
Here are some facts you need to know about this major w abosurgery.
- There’s more than one type of hysterectomy. In fact, there are 3 kinds:
Supraservial (removing just the upper portion of your uterus)
Total (removing the entire uterus and cervix.)
Radical (taking out your uterus, its side tissue, your cervix, and the upper portion of your vagina. This option is typically for cancer patients only.)
- A hysterectomy comes with a serious recovery period. Because hysterectomy is a surgical procedure, you will need to stay in the hospital, likely for at least 24 hours, afterwards. Many women will be unable to drive for at least two weeks following a hysterectomy. And most women will have to refrain from heavy lifting, bending over, sex and exercise for at least six weeks after surgery. For all of these reasons, you need to carefully consider your options before undergoing hysterectomy: there are less invasive options, like myomectomy or uterine fibroid embolization, that can help manage symptoms of certain conditions, like fibroids.
- Hysterectomies come with long term health complications. Not only will a hysterectomy permanently end your chances of becoming pregnant, this surgery comes with other risks. Young women who have hysterectomies are at higher risk of obesity and cardiovascular disease, just to name a few health concerns. It is not a treatment decision to be made lightly, as you will feel the impact of this surgery for years to come.
Dangers of Hysterectomy: a Warning Story
Back in 2017, Toshuua Hughes, now 46, went into an outpatient surgery center for a hysterectomy. But, what should have been a simple (yet invasive) operation turned into a total nightmare. Because of alleged complications regarding her sedation, Hughes never fully woke up from her surgery. Today, she lives in a special care facility for people with traumatic brain injuries. She will never be able to care for herself (or her five children) again.
While we don’t know if Hughes’ hysterectomy was medically necessary, we do know that many uterine removals could be avoided. In fact, as many as 70% of women who got hysterectomies for fibroids could have found relief in other ways. And one of those options, UFE, doesn’t require general anesthesia. Which means you would never face a tragic outcome like Ms. Hughes after treating fibroids with UFE.
Now that you are armed with the facts about hysterectomies and fibroids, it’s time to get educated about alternative treatments. To find out if you are a good candidate for our minimally invasive fibroid treatments, feel free to schedule a consult with our Houston-area fibroid specialists.