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CO2 Gas Relief after Laparoscopic Hysterectomy

From the Hysterectomy Recovery Articles List


woman holding stomach has gas after laparoscopic hysterectomyI am experiencing a lot of bloating and discomfort from the gas used in the laparascopic hysterectomy. How long can I expect the feeling to last? Is there any way to minimize it?

During a laparoscopic surgery for hysterectomy, CO2 gas is used to fill the abdomen and lift it away from the internal organs, giving the surgeon a better view for the procedure. Even though the CO2 is removed following surgery, the gas can become trapped against the diaphragm, causing pain and discomfort that can then radiate into the shoulder because of pressure on the phrenic nerve.

Heat and pain medications often bring relief. Try using two heating pads—one on the front and one on the back of the affected shoulder. If you are not taking medication for pain, ask your doctor which one might work best to alleviate your gas-related pain.

Also for the shoulder pain, some hospitals recommend lying on your side and bringing your knees up to your chest for 5–15 minutes. This can be difficult after a hysterectomy though, so check with your doctor first. Lying on your back with your hips elevated on several pillows may also help.

To help dissipate intestinal gas, consider peppermint tea, ginger ale, or carrot juice. Some doctors recommend drinking warm liquids. Carbonated drinks should be avoided for a few days.

Walking may help any trapped gas to dissipate, and over-the-counter gas aids could help with any intestinal gas issues.

Within a few days, the pain should subside.

As always, check with your doctor for advice before trying any medications, including over-the-counter products.

This content was written by staff of HysterSisters.com by non-medical professionals based on discussions, resources and input from other patients for the purpose of patient-to-patient support.

07-27-2011 - 04:00 PM


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