Hysterectomy—Open Surgery
What is it? Overview Usage Side Effects and Warnings
Answers

What is Hysterectomy—Open Surgery?

Click here to view an animated version of this procedure.

You may have a hysterectomy if your uterus is causing health problems that cannot be treated by other means. Some reasons a woman may have a hysterectomy are to:

  • Treat cancers such as uterine , endometrial, or ovarian cancers
  • Remove uterine fibroids —common, benign (noncancerous) tumors that grow in the muscle of the uterus
  • Treat chronic pelvic pain
  • Treat heavy bleeding

Explore your options before having a hysterectomy. There are other treatments for many of these problems.

Possible Complications

If you are planning to have hysterectomy, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Reactions to anesthesia
  • Pain
  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Fatigue
  • Injured pelvic organs (bowel and/or bladder)
  • Urinary incontinence (problems controlling your urine)
  • Loss of ovarian function and early menopause
  • Depression
  • Sexual dysfunction

Some factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

  • Obesity
  • Smoking
  • Heart or lung disease
  • Diabetes
  • Previous pelvic surgery or serious infection
  • Use of prescription and nonprescription drugs during the past month

Be sure to discuss the risks with your doctor before surgery.

Call Your Doctor

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