Hysterectomy is the surgery to remove the uterus and, in some cases, other reproductive structures of the female body, like the cervix, fallopian tubes, ovaries, and some vaginal portions. There are various health benefits as well as side effects of hysterectomy. Suppose a woman undergoes a hysterectomy that is uterus removal along with the removal of one or both ovaries. In that case, there are hormonal changes that the body has to face post hysterectomy. Surgically removing the ovaries is called oophorectomy. 

Health status post hysterectomy 

Studies are done to observe the prevalence of complications after hysterectomy and their severity after one year of follow-up. Some of the major symptoms that arise post hysterectomy are:

  • 1. Dryness of the vagina
  • 2. Hot flushes, sweating
  • 3. Heart discomfort
  • 4. Sleeping problems
  • 5. Muscle and joint problems
  • 6. Psychological problems 
  • 7. Depressive mood
  • 8. Irritability
  • 9. Anxiety
  • 10. Physical and mental exhaustion
  • 11. Urogenital issues
  • 12. Sexual problems
  • 13. Bladder problems
  • 14. Dryness of the vagina

These are complications that get resolved in most women post hysterectomy. Among these, urogenital problems get resolved significantly more than other problems when assessed one-year post hysterectomy. 

Various studies have reported improvement in the overall symptoms profile of women post hysterectomy when follow-ups are done after a year of surgery.

1-year post hysterectomy symptoms

Various post hysterectomy complications arise immediately after the surgical procedure, and some symptoms persist for months and years. 

  • 1. Hot flashes.
  • 2. Vaginal dryness.
  • 3. Changes in libido.
  • 4. Difficulty sleeping.
  • 5. Mood changes.
  • 6. Symptoms of anxiety and depression

Rapid ageing after hysterectomy

Various age-related issues may arise as a result of a hysterectomy. The majority of age-related problems arise when ovaries are removed (the surgical procedure called oophorectomy) and the hysterectomy (uterus removal). 

The women aged 45 – 64 years get hysterectomy along with oophorectomy. Ageing occurs because ovaries are responsible for producing an important hormone called estrogen. When the estrogen-producing organs are lost from the body, the hormonal imbalance, which is a sudden decline in the hormone estrogen levels, increases the ageing effect in the body. 

Some purposes of opting hysterectomy

Reasons for this surgery include 

  • 1. abnormal bleeding
  • 2. Uterine prolapse
  • 3. Fibroids 
  • 4. Cancer

Risk factors

  • 1. Blood clots
  • 2. Infection
  • 3. Excessive bleeding
  • 4. Adverse reaction to anaesthesia
  • 5. Damage to the varios pelvis structures, urinary tract, bladder, rectum
  • 6. Early menopause
  • 7. Death (rarely)

2-year post hysterectomy status

The following health problems got resolved or declined significantly 2 years post hysterectomy.

  • 1. Pelvic pain essentially declined for almost all the women who underwent surgery.
  • 2. Abdominal pain also decreased significantly 
  • 3. Hot flushes declined 3 years post hysterectomy
  • 4. Vaginal dryness got increased in a large number of women
  • 5. The sexual activity enhanced in most of the women 2- 3 years post hysterectomy
  • 6. Urinary frequency declined
  • 7. Nocturia decreased significantly in most of the cases
  • 8. Urge incontinence was not improvised much. It remained the same in most of the cases
  • 9. Stress incontinence declined in some cases and remained the same in some patients
  • 10. Difficulty in urinating declined significantly after hysterectomy
  • 11. The sensation of residual urine diminished
  • 12. In some cases, constipation increased compared to immediate or 1-2 years post hysterectomy follow-up.
  • 13. Diarrhoea declined
  • 14. Alternating bowel movements declined after 1-2 years of hysterectomy but got similar to presurgical times after three years post hysterectomy.
  • 15. Bloating increased in many women but also declined in some patients.

According to the research, 90% of women who underwent hysterectomy were satisfied with the surgery and reported good post-hysterectomy status. Some women also regretted that they could not get pregnant anymore.  

Three years post hysterectomy status.

According to a cohort study, the women with pelvic pain experience the pain again after 2- 3 years of hysterectomy. But it was evident that there were no new complications 3 years post hysterectomy.

Post hysterectomy status:

  • 1. Some patients would express regret at the loss of their periods if the patient were not aged.
  • 2. Some patients expressed regret at their fertility loss
  • 3. Some patients had concerns about femininity
  • 4. Health status is overall good post hysterectomy

Frequently Asked Questions

What does status post hysterectomy mean?

Status post hysterectomy means no more periods or menstruation, and the woman who undergoes hysterectomy cannot get pregnant. Hysterectomy removes the uterus or womb wherein the fetus develops, so a woman can no longer have periods and childbearing ability.

What are common problems that often arise after the hysterectomy?

Common problems associated with hysterectomy

  • 1. Infections
  • 2. Venous thromboembolism
  • 3. Genitourinary (GU) injury 
  • 4. Gastrointestinal (GI) tract injury
  • 5. Bleeding
  • 6. Nerve injury
  • 7. Dehiscence of Vaginal cuff 

What happens to your body after a hysterectomy?

After a hysterectomy, uterus or womb is removed, there is a certain adjustment of the remaining pelvic organs. There will not be periods or pregnancy anymore. 

If ovaries are also removed along with the uterus, hormonal disturbances in the body will arise, which will exaggerate the ageing effect.

Is hysterectomy major surgery?

Hysterectomy is a major surgery involving the removal of an entire organ that is the uterus and also other important parts of a woman’s reproductive system in some cases.

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