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Tummy Care | Will My Abdomen Be Filled With Gas?

From the Pre-Op Hysterectomy Articles List

Tummy Care | Will My Abdomen Be Filled With Gas?I am having my hysterectomy soon and I am a little scared. I was told by my doctor that they would fill my abdomen with air during the surgery. Will I be uncomfortable after surgery from this procedure and how long will it take to go back to my regular size?


A laparoscopic hysterectomy is a minimally invasive surgery which uses only small incisions. To allow a surgeon to have room to see and work, the abdomen is filled with either carbon dioxide or nitrous oxide gas during a laparoscopic surgery. The gas lifts the abdominal wall from the pelvic organs, creating a larger area in which the surgeon can work. The organs become more visible and accessible once gas has been introduced to the area, allowing your surgeon to work more freely.

Once the surgery is complete, the majority of the gas is released from the abdomen. A small amount usually remains behind, and over the coming days it is absorbed by your body tissues.

As a result of all the surgical trauma, gas, and fluids, you may experience some abdominal swelling, or swelly belly, after your hysterectomy which leaves you a bit thicker around the waist. Over a few weeks' times, the swelling should decrease and disappear. However, overdoing it can cause swelly belly to return and linger. In addition, you can find that you experience some swelling at the end of the day until your body has completely healed.

Some women notice the swelling without feeling uncomfortable, while others do find they don’t feel comfortable from it. Wearing loose clothing which is not constricting at the waist can feel best. On the other hand, support panties or a binder may also help by supporting the tender area.

You can usually return to wearing your normal clothes in a few weeks when the swelling is under control and there are no incisions in tender areas which will be rubbed. However, you may want to wait a bit longer to wear your jeans or any tight, constricting clothes. Until you know you are no longer having a bit of swelling as the day progresses, you may find it best to wear some of your looser, more stretchable clothing. This is especially true for your first outings and returning to work.


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.

01-02-2015 - 07:51 AM


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