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Surgery changed from LASH to TAH Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

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  #1  
Unread 02-27-2012, 03:46 PM
Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

Hi all this is my first post. I'm 46 and suffering from large fibroids and extremely heavy, unpredictable periods.
Initially the plan was LASH. Then I had an abnormal pap. After further examination there was no evidence of anything cancerous but both my doctors agree that leaving my cervix may cause me problems down the road. They told me surgery to remove just the cervix, is complicated and I really don't want to need surgery again anytime soon.
So, I haven't had my official pre-op with my surgeon yet. That happens on 3/1. My doctors have talked as I said and because of the need to now remove my cervix and the growing size of my uterus. They feel abdominal surgery is the best option.
Frankly I'm not too surprised. They both told me early on that there is ALWAYS a chance a laprascopic procedure may have to be converted to abdominal. So all along I've been hoping for the best and preparing for the worst.

I'm scared. I already have a back injury that requires pain management. I'm afraid of how much more this will hurt pot-op. I'm worried about recovery time and possible complications. I've been praying a lot late at night when all the fear sets in. I've read one really inspiring, positive TAH post-op story here and I'm looking for more.

Would any of you share your story with me without anything terribly scary? I would soooo appreciate any input. I just got this news an hour ago and feel so upset.

Thank you all for being out there and to the founders of this wonderful site, I can't thank you enough.

-Melissa
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  #2  
Unread 02-27-2012, 04:23 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

Melissa,
I am sorry for how you are feeling. I know what you are going through. I cried every night leading up to my TAH. I was terrified. I was not a candidate for any of the other procedures due to a ventral incisional hernia and diastasis rectic repair last year. Basically I had a large hernia and a 2 inch separation of my abdominal muscles that had to be stitched back together. I have such a huge ridge of scarring around my belly button, they are afraid to go near me with a laparoscope for fear of piercing my bowel or weakening the hernia and muscle repair.
While I am only 6 days post op, so far the surgery and recovery has not been as bad as I had imagined. The worst part was not the pain, but the nausea I got from the anesthesia. I have that managed now and the pain is not nearly what I had dreamed. I am able to get up, carefully, on my own and shower by myself. I have not had any issues peeing and with lots of stool softeners and prune juice, my bowel movements aren't too bad either. My incision is about 5 inches and healing nicely so far. As far as pain meds, that is very different since we all respond differently, but I have already reduced the amount of Norco I take. I took one this morning, and have managed with ibuprofen the rest of today. I will probably take another one in a few hours, but I had this vision I would be taking them round the clock for weeks. I am not.
It is a bummer to see some post where others that had the Davinci or laparoscopic procedure are out and about quicker. I have grandma here helping with the family, and she is willing to stay 6 weeks. I guess I am happy to take advantage of the extra rest time I will get. I am also, in a way, glad to have an external reminder of what took place inside. Keeps me from trying to overdo it. I know from experience it is easy to forget what has taken place on the inside without something to look at on the outside.
Anyways, that was long and I hope helpful. It is just one story of many, but I thought you should know that there are more TAH stories that are successful..so far.
I will say a prayer for peace for you as your surgery approaches.
  #3  
Unread 02-27-2012, 05:22 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

  Quote:
Originally Posted by silentmoon View Post
Hi all this is my first post. I'm 46 and suffering from large fibroids and extremely heavy, unpredictable periods.
Initially the plan was LASH. Then I had an abnormal pap. After further examination there was no evidence of anything cancerous but both my doctors agree that leaving my cervix may cause me problems down the road. They told me surgery to remove just the cervix, is complicated and I really don't want to need surgery again anytime soon.
So, I haven't had my official pre-op with my surgeon yet. That happens on 3/1. My doctors have talked as I said and because of the need to now remove my cervix and the growing size of my uterus. They feel abdominal surgery is the best option.
Frankly I'm not too surprised. They both told me early on that there is ALWAYS a chance a laprascopic procedure may have to be converted to abdominal. So all along I've been hoping for the best and preparing for the worst.

I'm scared. I already have a back injury that requires pain management. I'm afraid of how much more this will hurt pot-op. I'm worried about recovery time and possible complications. I've been praying a lot late at night when all the fear sets in. I've read one really inspiring, positive TAH post-op story here and I'm looking for more.

Would any of you share your story with me without anything terribly scary? I would soooo appreciate any input. I just got this news an hour ago and feel so upset.

Thank you all for being out there and to the founders of this wonderful site, I can't thank you enough.

-Melissa
I had a TAH and will be 6 weeks post op tomorrow. I had an enlarged uterus and big fibroids as well. My surgeon said he wanted to go with a TAH because the fibroids and uterus were just a bit too big. He said doing any other type of surgery, given the size of everything, would be a terrifying thrill ride. Given that, the TAH sounded just fine to me.

I'm happy I had the TAH. My surgery and recovery have been free of any complications. The surgery was very uneventful my surgeon said. I was in the worst pain the first week only. By the start of the second week, 95% of the pain was gone. And the pain I had the first week was on par with pulling a muscle in the abdominal area like if you played a vigorous game of kick ball or softball sliding into home base and pulling something. They also have good drugs to make you feel nothing if pain is an issue for you. By the time I returned home 2 days after surgery, I just used ibuprofen, like you would for a pulled muscle.

I've been off work 6 weeks and expect to go back part time just shy of 7 weeks. Although most of the pain went away very quickly, I'm mainly dealing with fatigue, wanting to sleep a lot, and swelling in belly area. I can't wait to get my energy back more than anything at this point.

And I'm pleased that I'm less constipated (fibroid was closing off my rectum), my bladder is working much better and I don't have to pee all the time, and my acid reflux has improved dramatically.

Don't be afraid of the TAH. I've been hanging around the post op forum a lot and it seems that the women who had other types of surgeries had their fair share of issues with their surgeries and healing to the point I'm actually happy I got the TAH.

I wish you an excellent surgery and healing.
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  #4  
Unread 02-27-2012, 05:55 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

I share your concerns...I have chronic back issues too. I am afraid that the surgery will be hard on my back. My only saving grace for back pain lately is to walk. I have been unable to do much walking lately as the weather is not cooperating and I just feel lousy all the time. Between cramping and bleeding and now a new symptom...rectal pressure and hemorrhoids....not feeling like doing much of anything. I am hoping walking post-op combined with some support garments and/or binder will help. I have been told that although they are planning a LAVH not to be surprised if they end up doing a TAH...because of enlarged uterus and Lord knows what else. Has anyone discussed with you the best way to handle your chronic pain? I have a TENS unit which is going to come in handy I am sure. I am anxious to compare notes with you as we share the same concerns.
  #5  
Unread 02-27-2012, 06:06 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

dearest melissa-
i am so sorry you're scared and you have every right to be.i am also glad you have a competent doctor.i have read sometimes dr's change mind during surgery and you dont get to get mentally prepared for the recovery of a TAH.
I HAD A GOOD SURGEON.BUT he wasnt all that good as far as pre-op.well not really just him but his staff.i wasnt told what to expect after surgery,other than you cant have sex for 6 weeks and not to lift anything over 5 lbs.same way w/ hospital.no accurate discharge instructions at all.i ended up telling his staff that i had received more info from him and from what i've been told from my nursing friends,its actually nurse's job to prepare you for what lies ahead.i didnt find this site until about 2 weeks after surgery.i had a lot of trial/error.,meaning i had to find out everything the hard way.if you have any kind of issues,please feel free to post your concerns ,need be by this site and at your doctor's office. i had compared recovery to c-section recovery,do not do this.its nothing like a c-section recovery besides the actual cut ,sex,and the not lifting part AND THATS IT!
DOCTOR DIDNT EVEN KNOW I WAS SO BAD ATE UP W/ ENDO TIL THE ACTUAL SURGERY!he didnt do any ultrasound besides the vaginal one.my omendum(attached to your colon) had growed out of control and had reattached itsself to many organs and then balled itsself up in between rectum and cervix.not doing proper tests before surgery could've saved me a lot of grief.i didnt get 2nd opinion cause of amount of pain i was in.i just wanted the pain to stop.the doctor said after surgery i had every right in the world to have been in very extreme pain.duh!i tried to tell him.make sure your doctor answers every question you may have.
recovery from a TAH is very trying and it makes you very sore.you will feel as though by the week and each day,your body is going thru different changes in your recovery.i, myself,thought i was better at the end of week #2.i was better enough to just be at home not to work.i started working at the 3rd week recovery waiting tables(1 day/week).this was a huge mistake.but i managed thru it.so its doable.
you will want to do nothing for the 1st full week.you will need help w/ housework.your body will trick you into thinking you're better but keep in mind that you may feel tons better in a week or two post but just take your time.
i did regret surgery after it was done cause i felt like i was nothing w/o my legs but it will get better.it just takes good ole fashion time.
i am 3 1/2 months post and i am still having some issues but i think its where i tore a vaginal muscle @ week#7 post.i am hoping this is what it is and not endo.AND NO,i dint get a torn vaginal muscle from wild and kinky sex.i had brought wood in from outside and then pushed vacummn cleaner into my livingroom.dont push yourself and you'll do fine.everyday you will feel better.
even though w/ so many issues,i do not regret this surgery at all and i've already lost 10 lbs.
are you keeping ovaries?if you can, try to keep them cause they're beneficial to your overall health.from what i've been told,surgical menopause is just horrible.
make sure you have a good support team at home.if you dont this will/can setback your recoverytime.i didnt have much support and i still hold a grudge against my husband,son and my family.they could have helped me and they didnt or it was an act of congress to get them to.
start getting yourself prepared,cause you're fixing to go thru a journey.but there is a light @ the end of the tunnel.its human nature to be scared but you can do this.
also thru a TAH,IT GIVES DR'S THE BEST CHANCE TO SEE WHAT'S GOING ON INSIDE OF BODY.
best wishes to you and i wish you the bestrecovery.
  #6  
Unread 02-27-2012, 06:50 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

Thank you all so much! You've helped me calm myself down a lot.Also one friend who is a surgeons daughter told me it's almost better to have abdominal surgery because they can really look and see clearly if you have any other problems. So, I'm going to keep it all as positive as I can. I will keep posting. What a blessing to have this site and all of you!
Thank you again...
  #7  
Unread 02-27-2012, 09:06 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

hi melissa,
i'm 3 wks post op. i had a TAH kept overies and cervix. i had a very large uterus do to fibroids. i was so scared to go thru this, not so much scared more indesicive, thinking if my symptoms were worth the complications after wards.
my problems were: the pressure of my bladder and rectum always feeling full and a lot of pain all the time, my cloths didn't fit me and i couldn't even tie my shoes - like if i was 6 months prego, i didn't have bad periods at all (didn't have my period 5 month before my surger) lol.
my surgery was 3 hrs and i needed 2 pints of blood, due to the unexpected size of my uterus (i wish i would've donated some of my own blood before) but oh well. stayed in hosp 2 1/2 days with a pain IV (i could pump meds as needed - which i did ;-) for a day, then i took pain pills, after my catheter was removed i pee'd on my own within 2 hrs, didn't have a BM till the fith day. once at home it was very challenging the first week, i had a lot of help. my doc told me to take miralax (to avoid constipation and stool softner) while taking pain meds. the worst experience was the gas pains (still have them once in a while) ask for some gas meds.
I'm happy i did my surger, i lost 10 lbs and 8" off my waist :-D
i didn't realize how bad my quality of life was until after the surgery (i guess i learned to live with the discomfort, because it was slowly getting worst and worst). sorry for the long story, but i wanted to paint you my picture...i hope the best for you and good luck!

rosel
  #8  
Unread 02-27-2012, 09:23 PM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

Silentmoon,
I had my TAH on 1/12 due to an enlarged uterus filled with fibroids. I really do feel as if I had a text book recovery. I was in the hospital for 2 days. Since leaving the hospital I have had no spotting/discharge or complications. I had the normal gas pains and pressure the first few days (don't think there is any getting around that). I had the Swelly Belly issue up until week 5. But I feel great. I'll be 7 weeks ob Thursday which is also the day I return to work. Insomnia has been an issue for me but i know going back to work will solve that. I was cleared for sex at 6 weeks and it was great. No pain or discomfort. I feel 200% better than I felt before the surgery. To make things better, today my doctor called to tell me my blood levels were in the normal range and I no longer have to take iron pills AND there were no traces of blood in my urine. I haven't heard that in 20 years. So far this has been the best decision I've made for myself in a long time.
I wish you the best with your surgery. Remember regardless of the method take it super easy...it's still major surgery.
  #9  
Unread 02-28-2012, 11:10 AM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

I am 10 weeks post-op from abdominal hyst, removing uterus only. I had very large fibroids and a large, distorted uterus. I had been experiencing extreme cramps and severe bleeding, causing anemia. I honestly feel like a new, better person now, both physically and mentally. I had very manageable pain right after the surgery, and only needed ibuprofen once I was released two days later. The worst pain for me was gas pain that had settled under my ribcage, but walking and drinking water cleared that up fairly quickly.

I believe my positive attitude has helped me to heal so quickly. I've listened to my doctor's instructions and do not want to rush my healing. I'm so happy to have no more pain or bleeding.

Prior to surgery, I had filled my ipod with very happy, upbeat music. I listened to this while I walked around my house post-op. It really helped to keep me positive those first few weeks.

My sex life is better than ever! I feel like a 20 year old again, and I'm almost 50! I used to have no desire for sex, because if I wasn't bleeding, I was worried about bleeding. I haven't had a drop of blood since the day after surgery. I feel so lucky and blessed to have a new lease on life.

Try to remain positive. You'll get through this and if you're like me, it won't be nearly as bad as you imagine it will be!
  #10  
Unread 02-28-2012, 11:55 AM
Re: Surgery changed from LASH to TAH

and

I'm so sorry that you are having to go through this. I just wanted to chime in and add my success story.

I had my TAH/BSO in May 2011. I was terrified. I had a couple of minor outpatient surgeries before, but nothing like this and I didn't know what to expect. I will say that it was not as bad as I thought it was going to be. The key is staying on top of the pain.

I had no complications with my surgery at all and it was pretty meticulous work for my surgeon. I spent 4 days in the hospital and then headed home. I took my pain meds as they were prescribed and did my best to stay ahead of the pain. I followed all my 's orders, but was still somewhat of a slow healer.....but that's okay. I had a smooth recovery with no complications there either.

I have never felt better!! It was a scary and hard decision to make, but I would do it again 100 times if I had to. I have so much more energy than I had for years, I am pain free and out there living the life I have missed out on for way too long. I am a completely new woman and loving every minute of it!!!


You will be fine. Just follow your doctors orders carefully and completely during your recovery. Take care of yourself let yourself heal! I wish you the best of luck. I hope you have the same results I did!!

You can also find more success stories in the section for Abdominal Hysterectomy Stories

Sending positive thoughts and your way!!!
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