Practical preparation for your hysterectomy – Irmagean’s story

Irmagean shares some practical preparation and knowledge of her hysterectomy earlier this year. In 2011 I was referred to an OB to discuss my heavy periods as a result of fibroids, at that time she suggested an IUD. While it was good having no periods with the IUD, I was having a period every day with light bleeding which required a light panty liner. I removed the IUD after a few months.

In 2013 I changed family doctor as my previous one moved. I was referred to another OB. He suggested Fibristal (Esmaya in the UK) to help shrink the fibroids. I agreed and took it for three months. It did help reduced the heavy periods. However, I was having the heavy bleeding again. At that time I was 48 years old and he suggested that I wait until I get into menopause to avoid having surgery. I agreed and waited. My situation was not getting better. In 2016 I had a heavy period which lasted more than 14 days. Surgery was recommended. On July 7, 2017 I had a Total Abdominal Hysterectomy and Bilateral Salpingo-Oophorectomy.

Preparation prior to surgery:

I informed my family and friends of the surgery date. I made purred vegetable soup and freeze it. I purchased a few comfortable loose nighties to wear at home.

After surgery:

The pain after surgery was not fun, nothing like when I had my two children via C-sections. I used my pain pump constantly to help with the pain. I got out of bed on day two after my bag was removed and started walking. I have not stopped walking. On day three my OB ordered the pain pump removed as I was vomiting. I was taking oral pain meds instead. In hospital it took me a while to pass the gas and have a bowel movement. I was given a laxative which didn’t do much. The pain and discomfort was unbearable. Having the urge to use the bathroom was extremely painful as I was constipated from all the pain meds.

On day four I finally passed gas once and was discharged home without having a bowel movement. My family transferred a bed on the first floor where the kitchen and power room is for easier access, this was very helpful in not having to do the stairs. In week four I was hit with menopause which was extremely difficult for me to deal with. I mentioned it to my OB at the follow up visit and he prescribed an oestrogen supplement. I was sceptical at first due to the side effects, however after a follow up post op visit with my family doctor; he encouraged me to take it as my body needed it.  I started taking it and have not seen a difference as it is day two.

My advice to anyone having the surgery:

I encourage you to inform your family and friends that you are having surgery, as they will be very helpful during your recovery, walk as soon as you can and don’t stop. When your body is going through the changes of menopause try your best to work around it and not let it take control of your emotions. Take a nap everyday.

If you have disability insurance on your mortgage or credit cards, contact the bank to see if you qualify for benefits while off work.

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