HysterSisters Articles for Hysterectomy
SHARING IS CARING
Abdominal Hysterectomy - TAH/BSO - Marilyn's Story
From the Princess Stories Articles List
After a year of trying to make a decision regarding a TAH/BSO due to a genetic predisposition for cancer, I decided that it truly was in my best interest to have this surgery. It was the hardest decision I've ever had to make, but as I look back it was probably the best decision I ever made.
My surgery was scheduled for Jan. 7, 2000 and since I scheduled it in October, I had to wait 3 months. In a way it went really fast since I had the holidays to get through, and I was busy with work, kids, shopping, etc. I did donate blood to myself for the procedure and it was reassuring to know it was in the OR if I needed it.
The day of surgery arrived and I was scared but under control. I got to the hospital 1 1/2 hours prior to surgery. I was led to a recliner and told to change into my hospital gown and slippers. They attempted to start an IV and blew my vein so decided to wait until I was in the O.R. and let the anesthesiologist do it.
My husband and I talked and waited. They finally brought me the consent form to sign and as I went to sign my name I glanced at the surgery scheduled and realized it was WRONG!!! They had me down for a supra-cervical hysterectomy NOT a TAH/BSO. Words of advise to all sisters-READ THE CONSENT FORM BEFORE YOU SIGN IT. I wouldn't sign and was told that I'd see my Dr. in the O.R. and I would get it settled there.
They didn't give me anything to settle my nerves since I didn't have an IV in yet but they also told me it was NOT standard policy to give a relaxant prior to surgery unless the patient was extremely aggravated. They like patients to go under anesthesia without any other sedation in their system. I was fine with that.
A nurse came with a stretcher, and I hopped up on it. I said good-bye to hubby and was wheeled to the hallway outside the O.R. At that point I had 2 nurses, a nurse anesthetist, the anesthesiologist, my doctor and the assisting surgeon all gathered around me discussing what exact surgery I would have. When we determined it was to be a TAH/BSO I signed the form and in the O.R. we went. I chatted with my doctor while my IV was started and remember feeling slightly dizzy. Next thing I knew I woke up in recovery.
I remember feeling pain and saying the word "pain" and was told I would feel better in moments. They put the "push button" Morphine medication in my hand told me how to use it, and I did use it. Soon I drifted off and felt no pain at all. I ended up staying in the Recovery Room overnight because the hospital was full of patients with the flu. That was not a good experience being in recovery for 24 hours, but the next day I got a room in the afternoon.
My catheter was taken out the morning after surgery but 8 hours later I wasn't voiding on my own so in it went again. This happened TWICE more. I was unable to void so I was re-catheterized 3 times in the hospital. Finally, as I sat in the bathroom trying to go the night before I was to be discharged, a nurse came in and told me she had a trick up her sleeve. She reached into her pocket and pulled out an ammonia vial, broke it and threw it into the liner used to measure your urine. Immediately I began to urinate. I guess the fumes from the ammonia caused the bladder to contract; I'm not sure, but it worked! Bless her heart!
I was operated on Friday and went home Monday morning. Getting home was wonderful. I continued to have strange sensations in my bladder, but I was able to urinate. My doctor assured me the bladder was traumatized during surgery and would be fine, but it would take time. (It's now 8 weeks and it's much better but still feels like a weight in my abdomen). Moving my bowels was particularly painful, as was sneezing and coughing. But other than that, pain was minimal and I only took Advil -no prescription pain meds. I was amazed at how well I felt.
I am now 8 weeks post-op and have never felt better. I went back to work at 3 1/2 weeks post-op (part time) and at 6 weeks was back full time. My HRT is working beautifully, I feel balanced and exactly the same as I did prior to surgery. Quality of sex was a big concern for me but I can honestly say sex is wonderful, even better than ever.
Once I made my mind up to have this surgery, I refused to second-guess myself and I went into it was a positive attitude. I think that really helped. I am so glad I did this and recuperation was much smoother than I thought. The first 2 weeks are the hardest, but I found I had what I would describe as discomfort not pain. I was so pleasantly surprised at that. I was very lucky in that I had no major complications and such a smooth recovery and I thank God every day for that. Anticipation was definitely the worst part of this experience. I hope my story helps a lady in waiting as I read all these stories prior to my surgery. Good luck to all of you and I hope your experience is positive, too.
04-30-2003 - 05:18 PM
SHARING IS CARING
Do you have a question?
If you have a medical support question related to this article, come JOIN US in our HysterSisters Community Forums. You will receive helpful replies to your questions from our members. See you there!
Options to Hysterectomy
Hormone and Menopause
Intimacy after Hysterectomy
Fitness after Hysterectomy
Grief and Loss
Ask A Doctor
Find a Surgeon
|Mark Richey, M.D.
1200 Airport Heights
Anchorage AK 99508
|Caren C Reaves, M.D.
Caring for Women
2805 S. Mayhill Rd
Denton TX 76208
|Antonio Gargiulo, M.D.
Brigham and Women's Hospital
75 Francis Street
Boston MA 02115
|Aileen Caceres, M.D.
Center for Specialized Gynecology/Florida Hospital
410 Celebration Place, Suite 302
Celebration FL 34747
|Eve LaValley Willsey, M.D.
5821 Jameson Court
Carmichael CA 95608
|Kym Boyman, M.D.
1775 Williston Rd., Ste. 110
South Burlington VT 05403
|Joseph S. Valenti, M.D.
2805 S. Mayhill Road
Denton TX 76208
|Jack Ayoub, M.D.
44035 Riverside Parkway
Leesburg VA 20176
|Lauren Streicher, M.D.
Gynecologic Specialists of Northwestern, S.C
680 N. Lake Shore Dr., Suite 117
Chicago IL 60611