LAVH - 3 days post-op and I feel great! (children mentioned) | HysterSisters
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LAVH - 3 days post-op and I feel great! (children mentioned) LAVH - 3 days post-op and I feel great! (children mentioned)

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Unread 08-09-2007, 07:53 AM
LAVH - 3 days post-op and I feel great! (children mentioned)

My hysterectomy story really begins about 6 years ago. I had had a tubal ligation in 2001 after the birth of a child and immediately started having very irregular menstrual cycles and lots of mid-cycle bleeding. I thought it was due to the birth of my son and my doc put me on BCPs to try and regulate my cycles but whenever I would go off them it was just more of the same. I didn't know why and neither did he, but I tend to think it had to do with the TL.

Not long after my son was born I got a divorce and began dating a special man. We lived together for a few years and then got married. My husband had no biological children, though I had 4 of my own. We decided to try to have my tubal ligation reversed and miraculously my cycles returned to normal after my tubes were restored. My husband and I were thrilled to conceive 3 months later. I went on BCPs after the birth of our child, then off them when she was a year old. We immediately conceived again but sadly that baby was ectopic, a real risk with any previous tubal surgery. I lost both my left tube and ovary due to complications and a test later proved that my remaining tube was blocked. To try and conceive again would mean more tubal surgery and a higher risk of another ectopic. It wasn't a chance my husband and I were willing to take so we decided our family was complete.

In the meantime, my cycles had gone to every 23-25 days with about 15 days of that dealing with bleeding and spotting. I was having a lot of cramping and sometimes couldn't even sit down it hurt so bad. I became so tired of having to try and schedule my life around periods. My sex life was almost nil and I was getting absolutely disgusted with my own body. My emotions were unpredictable...I don't know if it was hormonal or just sadness with feeling betrayed by my own body all the time. I went to a new doctor to help me figure out what was wrong and after a transvaginal ultrasound she disgnosed me with adenomyosis and said my uterus was enlarged and boggy. I had never heard of that before but I was very happy to finally have a name for what was ailing me! She said it isn't certain what causes adeno, it could be anything from age (I am only 38) to uterine surgery like my only c-section from my last baby. I didn't care what caused it really, I was just happy to know I wasn't crazy, I really did have something that was making me so unhappy!

She explained that uterine ablation wouldn't help me but we could try a constant dose of the mini-pill to try and stop the bleeding or I could choose hysterectomy. The pill actually made things worse so I scheduled my LAVH. After reading the posts on hyster sisters I became much more at peace with the decision. There were so many positive stories to read and so many smart women happy with their decision I was certain I made the right choice. The one thing I kept hearing was the waiting was the worst and that certainly turned out to be true! The last week before my surgery I was in panic mode a lot of the time.

I did the bowel prep on Sunday 8/5 and while being unpleasant it wasn't quite as bad as I anticipated. I went to the hospital at 7am on Monday 8/6. Before I knew it I was being woken up and told I was all done! I kept saying "I really don't have a uterus?" in the recovery room. It still seems a bit surreal to me! I was given a room and my husband brought up my bag and a pretty flower pot filled with candy for the nurses and aides I had made up for them. I wanted them to know that I appreciated the care and I knew I would be cranky, so I didn't want them to hold it against me. I really hate hospitals and the experience of my ectopic pregnancy left me with a lot of anxiety about being there.

One thing I have noticed from even a few hours out from surgery is how GOOD I feel. I knew my uterus was causing me discomfort a lot of the time, what I didn't realize was that it was bothering me ALL the time. The pain was there but I didn't notice how bad it was until it was gone. My whole abdominal area is free from the pressure and pain of my enlarged uterus and I feel such relief!

I had my vagina packed with gauze and that was removed around 6pm the night of surgery. The nurse had a little difficulty getting it out, apparently they forgot to leave a little tail of it hanging out. When she did finally get it, she said it was almost completely dry. It didn't hurt too badly to get it out, just when she pulled out the very end. I was laughing and saying it was like a magician with the never-ending pocket handkerchief!

I had difficulty swallowing after the surgery and could only manage soft foods like noodles and canned fruit and ice cream. Every time I tried to chew and swallow something it got caught in my throat. I am sure this was caused by the tube used during surgery and that has taken a few days to get back to normal.

The only bad part of my story was the night in the hospital. I am not a good patient and begged to go home the same day. They insisted I stay overnight and I didn't sleep but a few hours. I rolled over and disconnected my catheter tube so I woke up soaking wet. I was crying and standing there holding the bag of urine, naked while a nurse changed my clothes and my bed. It was totally humiliating! I demanded the catheter be removed and they did as I requested though my doctor had wanted it in overnight. I also had an elderly room mate (the private rooms were all full) and she was very high maintenance. I had to keep finding aides for her, she soiled herself in bed and the room smelled horrible. Her IV alarms kept going off and no one came for her. I sat in a chair quietly crying for my husband most of the night watching the clock. I just wanted to go home and sleep! At 9am Tuesday I was finally allowed to leave.

My recovery at home has been wonderful, aside from some nausea and vomiting Wednesday from the pain meds. I took some anti-nausea medication and stopped the painkillers to settle my stomach. My husband said I was moaning a lot in my sleep but the pain wasn't so bad that it woke me up or anything. Today I am able to tolerate the pain meds again and I am also able to eat a little more.

There has been a tiny bit of spotting since the surgery, nothing major. My doctor says the spotting can last up to 6 weeks but after the nightmare cycles I have been dealing with this seems easy to me. I am restricted from driving for 2 weeks, tub baths for 2 weeks and sex for 6 weeks. I think I will miss the hot baths most! It was funny having my doc tell my husband and I that we could "do other things, just no penetration/intercourse" for the 6 weeks. My husband blushed! I guess men don't talk to their doctors the way women do. I have a post-op appointment scheduled for 8/23. I have had a little belly bloating but to me it seems my stomach is actually flatter than before even with the gas. I can't wait until all the swelling goes down!

I am truly grateful that I found Hyster Sisters before my surgery. It has been so helpful to be able to read the experiences of other women and ask for advice and to know what to expect. This site is a godsend and I hope reading my story has helped ease the fears of someone else! I feel like hysterectomy is the best choice I could have made for myself and I might not have been so confident about it without the ladies here. I feel such freedom and inner joy now and I am looking forward to my life again! Thanks!
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