Vaginal hysterectomy plus sacrospinus fixation for prolapse – Giselle’s story

I had a very difficult birth with my only child 24 years ago, so when I first suspected I had a prolapse problem some 7 years ago, I hoped and hoped that it would just “go away”, hence the reason I lived with it for so long. I visited my GP 2 years after I realised things were not right. She diagnosed a bowel prolapse.

Told me to do pelvic floor exercises and assured me that it would solve it. Well, of course it didn’t. I also “googled” bowel prolapse, only to find that I had none of the symptoms associated with this!! But I did have symptoms for a bladder prolapse!!

Over the next 5 years it got increasingly worse….The last 2 have been so awful. Finally, I got the courage to see the GP who referred me to a urogynaecologist.

He examined me and said yes I certainly did have a bad prolapse, but it was my WOMB that had prolapsed, and my bladder..NOT my bowel. He recommended I had a hysterectomy. I was totally shocked, as had not even thought about THAT! He said he would do it vaginally, but I would also need a pelvic repair to realign my bladder into the right position, and a sacrospinous fixation, to stop the top of the vagina vaulting afterwards….

Phew….I was terrified.

But he was/is THE most amazing surgeon who wanted me to have as long as I needed to decide, never pushed me into it, gave me all the options, of doing nothing, having a pessary, or surgery. He also said that he could remove my womb, and I would never realise it had gone!! And he is absolutely right. Physically, I would never know!

I decided on surgery, I really could not live with this thing protruding out of my body, and causing me discomfort each and every day.

The surgery went well. I felt great as soon as I came round, I opted for a general anaesthetic, and would recommend it to everyone, unless you are much braver than me, and can cope with a spinal block and sedation, or need it for medical reasons. I loved going to sleep and waking up, and it all being done!

Apart from the few days in hospital, I have had hardly any pain from the hysterectomy. Yes, cramping like period pains afterwards, but controlled with pain relief, and pulling if I have overdone it!
The other 2 procedures, have been much harder to cope with. The stitches from the bladder repair are painful, I still cannot sit, unless I sit on my left side. The discomfort in my right buttock has been bad from the sacrospinous fixation, which goes into the ligament near your tailbone. I am now 3 weeks into recovery, and feel great, but still unable to sit….

I had to see the surgeon 2 weeks after surgery, as the stitches were so excruciating when having a bowel movement, despite not being constipated at all!! He removed 3 stitches, and things have improved greatly. I am now just impatient for the wretched stitches to dissolve. For me, the vaginal hysterectomy has been a piece of cake!! Emotionally, I have felt absolutely fine. As I said at the beginning, I have had a child, and feel very blessed. I am also 60 years old, and have gone through the Menopause, so do not have that to endure.

My womb did an amazing job, I did not need it anymore, and I did say a fond farewell to it, and thanked it from the bottom of my heart for the wonderful way it carried my child for me.
It is a long recovery, but I feel SO much better for having had this surgery, despite the wretched stitches!! I hope my story helps someone, who may be facing the same type of surgery.

(Image courtesy: skeeze from Pixabay)

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