This article will provide you an overview of what to consider and expect when opting for an abdominal hysterectomy surgery.
A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure, which involves the removal of the uterus. There are a number of ways in which this can be done, one of which involves an incision made in the lower abdomen to enable removal. This is known as an abdominal hysterectomy surgery. In certain cases, it may also involve removal of the ovaries and/or fallopian tubes, which is known as a unilateral or bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. Removal of the uterus and the cervix through the abdominal incision is known as a total abdominal hysterectomy.
Apart from the abdominal incision method, this type of surgery may be performed through the vagina or by a laparoscopic procedure. However, the method of removal will depend on a number of factors, including the size of the uterus and the surgeon’s comfort with the procedure. This procedure ends the possibility of pregnancy, so it’s often the last recourse as far as treatment options go – in general, the following are the main causes that may warrant this surgery.
There are a number of gynecological problems that can lead to the recommendation of this operation, which has a lasting effect on a woman’s life. Apart from the fact that pregnancy is not an option, the process has a large impact on hormonal balance and general health. In the case of a total hysterectomy, where the ovaries are also removed, it may mean menopausal symptoms at a potentially young age. This is the reason why in many cases, it is the last course of treatment recommended.
Reasons for Surger
Women affected by uterine, ovarian, or cervical cancer may need this procedure to ensure that all cancerous tissue and cells are removed. In the case of gynecological cancers, the type of cancer and the stage of detection will decide whether or not this is the best procedure to perform.
This is a condition in which the uterine lining thickens or grows outside the uterine wall, alongside the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and the surrounding areas. In most cases, endometriosis is treated successfully by medication, however, when such treatment is ineffective, a total abdominal hysterectomy surgery may be suggested.
Fibroids are a common gynecological problem. They are mainly benign, tumor-like growths that can occur within the uterine lining or in the cervical region. In many cases, fibroids are asymptomatic, however, in some women, they may cause heavy bleeding, abdominal pain, urinary frequency and urgency, or painful sexual intercourse. Uterine fibroids vary in size, and large growths may need this surgical process to provide relief.
- Pelvic Organ Prolapse
When pelvic muscles and ligaments stretch and weaken, they may sometimes cause the uterus to ‘fall’ or descend into the vagina. A prolapsed uterus may lead to urinary incontinence or problems with bowel movements among other things.
- The procedure involves a small incision that is made just above the pubic hairline, or a vertical incision that is made from below the navel to just above the pubic bone.
- This incision cuts through connective tissue to reach the uterus, which is then removed. The procedure usually leaves a visible scar.
- Although the recovery time is longer than a laparoscopic or vaginal method, in many cases, this is a surgery of choice, since it allows the surgeon to view the organs clearly and gives more room to maneuver. However, an abdominal procedure may give rise to greater discomfort and associated risks, plus a longer hospital stay. It’s important to discuss all these factors with your doctor prior to opting for a particular method.
Some of the associated risks with this surgery are post operative bleeding, infection, blood clots, or an adverse reaction to anesthesia. So, remember to discuss all the possibilities clearly with a doctor before the surgery. Follow care recommendations stringently, and clarify any doubts that may arise. In many cases, there may be other options available, so take the time to discuss these clearly.
Should you choose to go in for this surgery, do so with a clear mind, having taken the time to think through all your choices.
Disclaimer: This HerHaleness article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.