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Coping with Anxiety and Fear before Hysterectomy

From the Pre-Op Hysterectomy Articles List

Worried about upcoming hysterectomyI'm really frightened about my upcoming hysterectomy. I'm anxious and have butterflies in my stomach all the time. What is wrong with me?

Having any surgery can be a scary proposition, and a hysterectomy is no exception. There is nothing strange about being afraid to go to a hospital to have your body cut open to remove organs. If you are experiencing pre-op anxiety, you are 100% normal.

There is no sure-fire remedy for eliminating pre-op jitters and sizzling nerves, but the HysterSisters have shared some ideas for managing anxiety during the waiting time:
  • Clean your house from top to bottom—really clean it!
  • Prepare “freezer meals” for your early post-op weeks.
  • Set up your recovery room, making it as comfy and convenient as possible.
  • Socialize with family and friends.
  • Go out and walk, skate, bowl, dance, etc. Physical activity can help relieve stress and promote a good night’s sleep.

It is comforting for some women to pray, attend worship services, and request prayers from members of their congregation. And, although it can seem morbid to some, quite a few HysterSisters have relieved a bit of their anxiety by writing letters to their children and others loved ones to be opened “just in case.”

It’s natural for hysterectomy patients who are mothers to try to “protect” their children (even if they are adults) from developing their own fear and anxiety about Mom going to the hospital to have an operation; consequently, they may conceal their emotions from their children. Other women don’t feel comfortable sharing their fears with their spouse, siblings, or anyone. They don’t want to worry or burden anyone, so they downplay everything. This concern is understandable, but it would be much more emotionally healthy to share your fears with even just one “confidante.” Don’t keep it all bottled in. You need to talk about it openly with someone, even if it is just one person.

If you are suffering terribly from pre-op anxiety and can’t seem to calm down from trying the remedies we suggest, talk to your doctor. It won’t be the first time your doctor has heard about this from patients facing a hysterectomy! Perhaps you can be prescribed a light sedative to take “as needed” until the big day. Don’t suffer needlessly. You need to be well-rested and emotionally fit when you embark on your journey to good health.

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.

03-10-2005 - 08:22 PM


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