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Unread 10-22-2002, 11:08 AM
vertical or horizontal

My question is which is the best way for the dr. to make his/her cut? My dr. said she would do a horizontal but it would be long, due to the size of my uterus. I was wondering if there was less muscle to cut through going horizontal verses the vertical. I want to go the way , less pain. (if there is such a thing with this surgery)

Also I read another post on whether to leave the cervix or have it removed. I think I am going to try and keep mine, the ovaries must go.

Another thought, why do some dr. have you do a bowel prep the night before and others do not. Would like to hear from both. I was told if no prep is done, it causes the bowels to start working faster. And what about the gas pains, does this depend on how well the dr. flattens your intestines before closing you back up?

I know I ask alot of questions, but I think the more informed you are the better. I see my dr. on the 29th and want to know what all to ask.

Thanks for your help.
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Unread 10-22-2002, 11:20 AM
vertical or horizontal


I had a vertical incision & it has been just fine. I read in another post on here that with a vertical NO muscle is cut; with a horizontal SOME IS cut. Given that info, & the fact that your dr says she will have to make a larger cut to accomodate your uterus, I wonder why she is not doing a vertical.

My dr did a vertical because she could get a better look around. I would ask your dr about this.

The bowel prep seems to depend on your dr & your specific surgery. My dr made it optional & I chose to do it on the advise of my sister. I am glad I did. I really did not have bad gas pain &, even though it took a couple of days to have a bm, things got moving just fine. I was glad I had done it also because my dr said my bowel was "persistant" - kept getting in her way as she was doing the surgery. I suspect if I hadn't been "cleaned out" it would have been worse. Jmho ...

Ask as many questions as you can think of. The more knowledge you have the better prepared you will be!

Good luck,

Unread 10-23-2002, 01:36 PM
vertical or horizontal

Hi, Raelee! It's always good to ask questions!

Have you checked the pull-down menus on the home page of this site? There's lots of info there.

I had a laprascopy-assisted vaginal hysterectomy so I only had three small abdominal incisions. I don't know anything about long incisions, but I can give you some other info from my own personal experience.

My doctor wanted me to do a bowel prep the night before surgery because he said it would be safer in case the bowels got nicked during surgery - there wouldn't be anything in there that could come out of the wound.

Also, my doctor left it totally up to me whether or not I had my cervix removed during the hysterectomy. He explained very clearly to me that, with the naked eye, the surgeon cannot tell *exactly* where the uterine tissue ends and the cervical tissue begins is possible for some uterine tissue to remain at the top of the cervix after the uterus has been removed. Because of that, the uterine tissue could still respond to hormones in the body and the woman may have "mini-periods" - something I definitely didn't want! I chose to have my cervix removed. He said it wouldn't affect my bladder. Marital relations have been just as great as before surgery - I haven't noticed any difference at all not having a cervix. This has been my experience.

You may want to ask your own doctor about his/her recommendations. You're right to get as much information as you can. Making an informed decision can really help you have peace about having this surgery.

You'll do great! I can tell you this - it's *wonderful* on the post-op side! I thank God every day that I'm not bleeding anymore!

Hope all goes well for you,


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Unread 10-23-2002, 01:49 PM
vertical or horizontal

I asked my Gyn today about cutting muscles with a horizontal cut and he said absolutely no cuts in them, work around them (separate them I think). Don't know about what happens with a vertical incision . I took a big list of questions with me, thanks to the prompts on the pull down menu at the top.
Bowel prep is so that the bowel is "shrunk" -empty and as Sue says it's also to avoid risk of infection if the bowel does get nicked in surgery.
I'm going to keep my cervix too, he was quite happy for me to do this, simpler surgery but only suitable for those of us who have no great risk factors for cervical malignancy. As I understand it the risk of mini-periods only applies if you keep cervix and ovaries, not if ovaries are removed.
Sorry, can't help about why gas is such a problem, but I'm sure someone else will be able to help out.
This site is great, the font of all knowledge,
Take Care
Unread 10-23-2002, 02:27 PM
vertical or horizontal

Hi Raelee;
I went in for laparoscopy, day surgery for removal of an ovarian cyst. I woke up with a total hyst. Be thankful you have the time to ask all your questions!
I didn't have bowel prep and haven't had too much trouble with my bowels. I have been taking stool softeners, stewed prunes, all bran and as much fruit as I can stomach. Who thought bm's would become so important!
Gas pains weren't bad at all. I think this might depend on the skill of your doc.
Good luck!
Unread 10-23-2002, 02:43 PM
vertical or horizontal

My two-cents' worth about bm's!

I took stool softeners for a couple of days after I got home from surgery and finally got a measure of relief but not to my satisfaction. So I modified a tip I read on this site about prunes (don't stop reading yet ).

Each morning for breakfast, I would have a hot, buttered bagel with four or five "bite-sized" dried prunes and a cup of hot tea. I much preferred the prunes over prune juice. They're actually sweet. This meal worked for me, so maybe it will work for you. I also tried to drink lots of water, have salads for lunch and take short walks (not alone for a while).


Unread 10-24-2002, 05:49 AM
Thank You!!

Would just like to say"Thank You "to all of you would responded to my questions. I am so glad I found this site,and have had the time to read and ask questions. You all have been great, and I wish the best for each and every one of you. So to all of you LIW , I am there with you and for you. and for the ones who are now I hope your recoveries are all smooth sailing.


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