I went without for almost three months, and am now on a minimal dose of Vivelle, balanced with bio-identical progesterone. That three months was valuable, as it taught me what my body seems to prefer.
One comment...some people, when they say "no hormones" tend to mean "no estrogen". Many of us find a great deal of relief from a touch of some bio-identical progesterone preparation (I take Prometrium and a touch of cream as well).
You can't know until you are there. Some women are miserable instantly; others either have fewer symptoms or tolerate them differently. So much will depend on you and your situation.
Also, remember that there may be surprises at the time of surgery. Some women have wound up without estrogen because of unexpected endo found at surgery.
There's another site that I like on this subject, besides the pulldowns at Hormone Jungle
, and that's Survivor's Guide to Surgical Menopause
. What that site does is give you information by brand name, as well as an excellent description of how the differing choices stack up. This is definitely an area where it pays to do your research: if at some future point you do decide to replace your estrogen, you'll be well-equipped to work with your caregivers as a team.
Good luck! I'll be thinking of you Wednesday...
We'll look for you on post-op, OK?