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Unread 01-29-2004, 10:05 PM

I am new to this forum, but am so happy I have found it! I am scheduled for surgery on Tues, the 3rd of Feb. and am having a TVH (unsure about lap. assisted) and am also having pelvic reconstruction due to a large rectocele and cystocele. I have been told the hysterectomy part of the surgery is not too bad as far as pain, but am not sure how painful the recovery will be from the pelvic reconstruction part. Has anyone undergone all 3 procedures at once? I am 34 yrs old and have a super busy life with taking care of my family, our home and handling the financial part of my husbands business. The main reason for the hysterectomy is due to chronic fatigue that is getting so much worse due to severe anemia. Can anyone help with some much needed advice? I am not sleeping much since I scheduled the surgery last week, and am trying desperately to get everything in my life caught up before Tuesday. I am almost a basket case and can't relax!!!
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Unread 01-29-2004, 10:30 PM
Rectocele also

Last June I had extensive surgery to correct pelvic prolapse. It felt wonderful afterwards, no more feeling that its falling out, no more lower back pain, intercourse was possible again. Then mid Nov I ripped it open (the rectocele). I was so mad about it. I didn't want it, the back ache was back, it felt like some days that it was growing "balls" between my legs..... so now I am waiting for surgery again. Not content to feel like this, when for 5 months I felt so good. Now my surgeon is on maternity leave, and her partner is trying to handle both case loads. Next appt is March 10th. Waiting again. Will I go through with the surgery again (YES). I know that my tissue is thin, that I am prone to pelvic prolapse, but I am not content with living my life with this problem. It is amazing how tire you get with a low level of contast pain or achiness. I am still young enough to enoy a sex life, and when prolapses are bad, intercourse is very difficult (if not impossible). I want to be normal!

Unread 01-30-2004, 10:55 AM

I've been reading the responses to my original post. So far Levanah seems to be the one that has gone through the repair and reconstruction longer ago than anyone. It is disheartening to know that you can get fixed, feel normal again and then suddenly one day you're back to square one. I'm curious, Levanah - do you have any idea why after 5 months something ripped? Was it due to any certain activities in your life or did it just happen?
At this point I am assuming that the problem I'm experiencing is due to a rectocele and that is based on many of the posts that I've read here as far as my symptoms go. That and the fact that my doctor who did the surgery last year tells me that there is also a problem with vaginal wall prolapse. He said that it could have been stitched at the time of the hysterectomy - why he didn't do it then, I have no idea.
I have scheduled an appointment with another OB-GYN on Monday morning for a second opinion. This is the doctor who who delivered my last son 13 years ago. I just recently found out that he is in my HMO's network. I trusted him then and I'll trust his opinion now. His receptionist told me on the phone when I scheduled the appointment that if he cannot perform the surgery himself he will refer me to someone who can. Since my situation isn't an emergency I intend to explore all of my options and hopefully find someone who will do the job right and hopefully last for a good while.
I have also come to the realization that I'll probably have to fight with the insurance company once again. Before the original surgery they were willing to pay for the bladder procedure but wouldn't cover the hysterectomy because it wasn't a severe enough prolapse of the uterus (it was only a 1). But I was 50 and didn't want to have to at some future date go back for that do be done. The nurses called me and asked if I'd ever experienced fibroids or anything else that would convince the insurance company to reverse their decision. As it happened, I hadn't had any other medical problems concerning the uterus but I did tell them that when my mom was in her mid 30's she had a hysterectomy for reasons I can't remember but after the surgery they found she had uterine cancer in the 3rd stage. She wasn't even aware she had cancer at the time. Evidently when the doctor relayed this info to the insurance company they immediately reversed their decision and approved the hysterectomy for me.
One other point - my doctor told me that I can blame my 6 kids for all of the problems I'm having with prolapses but if this is because of multiple births then why is it that my mom also had 6 kids and had a hysterectomy and she never experienced any of this?
And Mel, I didn't have all that's done that you are going in for but I did have the hysterectomy and the cystocele done together. The best advice anyone can give you is to make sure (after surgery) you take your stool softeners, drink lots of water and eat all of the right foods to avoid constipation. That turned out to be my biggest problem after surgery. Had it not been for the ordeal I went through with that my recovery would have been so much better and sooner.
Best of luck to all!
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Unread 01-30-2004, 03:41 PM
I agree

with the previous advise, drink lots of fluids, and avoid constipation. In my case, my rectocele occurred when I sat up in bed quickly (I was teased at work that I was doing somethink else in bed) using my stomach muscles. I guess they weren't strong enough. I also battle with constipation so that is also a major factor in the reoccurrance. Then again genetics may have something to do with it.

Unread 01-30-2004, 03:59 PM


I am 4 1/2 weeks post-op. I had vaginal hysterectomy (kept ovaries) and had pelvic reconstruction. I had a huge rectocele and also a cystocele. Honestly, the surgery was not as bad as I had anticipated. I took pain meds for the first week, then a couple of days during the second week. The worst part for me has been the spotting and discharge - just annoying. I had hoped I could have thrown those lovely pads out by now. (I've heard of some people that have very little of that. I guess I'm just one of the "lucky" ones! ha!) At this point, I can't say I have any real pain. I can tell I had something done, but for the most part it's been more of a crampy feeling off and on, with an occasional shooting pain out of the blue in my vagina. The doctor said those were just healing pains. I have been VERY good, though, so I would assume that helps the situation, too. Besides a trip to the doctor, today was the first day I was out. I went to a department store nearby (hubby drove me) and stayed about a half hour. By the time I got home I was totally bushed! I am normally very active, so that's really weird to be wiped out by a little shopping trip! I felt very tired in my abdomen, if that makes sense. I still plan to take it easy and do only what I have to. I have a wonderful husband and three teenagers that have been remarkable. That helps tons! They have a whole new appreciation for what mom does all day while they're at work and school! ha! Hope all goes great for you.
Unread 01-30-2004, 04:02 PM

Oh, and I agree with the advice about drinking lots of water and eating right! Constipation is the very last thing you need! I take stool softeners, but have found that a big bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios every morning works just as well! I also had a bladder suspension along with all the others, so drinking the water has helped my bladder get back in the swing of things, too.
Unread 01-30-2004, 04:38 PM

I agree that drinking a lot of water and eating diet high in fiber is important, but it isn't a cure all.

I drink about a gallon of water a day, drink juices and also eat a bag of lettece, but suffer from a rectocele. Stool softeners help, but my doctor thinks over the long run, they are doing more harm than good.

I have had three vaginal births, largest one over ten pounds. I've heard this also increases your chances of having a prolapse.

Any insight would be appreciated.


TAH/BSO with bladder repair
Unread 01-30-2004, 06:33 PM

I totally agree. My three vag. births (10 lbs. 2 1/2 oz, 9 lbs. 3 oz., and 9 lbs) were the prime reason my doc gave for my prolapses. He said childbirth is harder on the pelvic floor than we think. I know a lady younger than me that has had 7! Imagine her insides! WHEW!
Unread 01-30-2004, 09:34 PM

Hi girls.....goodness, thank you all for the insight. I have been chomping at the bit all day to get online and see what everyone had to say. What a day full of stress....and just when you feel so overwhelmed, more craziness happens! Last week we had the terrible stomach bug that has been going around....5 out of 6 of us! I was the only one who ended up in the ER with dehydration. Thankfully the kids all did well with it and by Saturday last weekend we were done. Well, by Monday, two of my four children had strep throat....more kids at home and no time to prepare for life after hysterectomy next week. Finally, Wed. they all went back to school. Thurs., DH came home early vomiting and had severe back pain. Today he had to go to the Dr. and ended up late afternoon in the ER with kidney stones! I am really starting to get frightened of having my surgery since I cant' keep ANYONE well here!!!! How can life go on with mom down for a while?! My oldest son is 11, the next son is 7 and my twins are 6. I am trying like a mad woman to organize the house, catch up on laundry, bills, school, office, etc. I certainly hope every thing goes well with the surgery and I am back and up and running again by March. Baseball season starts then and it is more running than ever. I hope they don't end up doing an abdominal incision in the long run, but something tells me not to rule it out. I have some adhesions I think from having my tubes tied and gallbladder out....they really pull inside at times. My rectocele and cystocele are from having 3 vaginal births....first child was 7'11, second was 10'6, and twins together weighed 11'1 (5'3 and 5'14) and they were 6 weeks early! No wonder I am so out of shape inside!!!!
Thanks for the advice....I definitely will need it. Thankfully hubby passed some of the stone and is waiting at home for it to land in the strainer. Now, if only everyone will stay well until after next week.....
Unread 01-31-2004, 07:51 AM

Hi Mel,
You certainly have had your hands full. I know what you mean about everyone needing Mom and not being able to get along without you. But I hope after your surgery you will be able to get the rest you need to recuperate completely. You would be surprised how much they can actually handle things on their own. Take the time to pamper yourself and let the kids and DH pamper you too so that you can get fully well. Don't feel pressured to do more than you feel up to. And if you start to feel you're doing too much listen to your body and stop. Even though I only have one son left at home (out of 6) and he was only 12 at the time of my surgery he was a tremendous help. I know yours are a little younger but I'm sure they will love being able to help you. Best of luck and lots of hugs.

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