Hysterectomy, and how uninformed I feel – Jacquie’s Story

I had a hysterectomy on the 23rd June 2011 as I had been suffering wth heavy bleeding for about 2 years and was very aneamic. I had a hysteroscopy in March prior to this and biopsies were taken which, thank god came back ok.

The decision to have a hysterectomy was more or less left in my own hands as there was no obvious cause for my heavy bleeding. At the time I was just so desperate for the heavy bleeding to stop which was every two – three weeks and lasting for about 10 days, my life was on hold. I was left with my ovaries which, was apparently in my best interest, I obviously trusted everything the consultant said and although this may sound odd, I really wanted to have my ovaries removed too. I don,t know why but, I just felt that it would be more straight forward to go on to HRT after my op and that I wouldn,t have any further problems.

My hysterectomy went ok, I had it done vaginally, so had stitches all the way up inside my vagina. This was very painful and felt like all my insides were going to fall out! I had vaginal bleeding for about 2 weeks, a urine infection 5 days after the op and had to have a blood transfusion 3 days after the op, as my blood count was very low. I was in hospital for 4 days and came home to a very caring husband and 3 children who took very good care of me. I made a good recovery and was driving after 4 weeks and doing light housework and cooking.

15 months on from my hysterectomy I feel like a different person but, not in a good way. I have put on 2 stone and gone from a size 10 to size 14 in clothes, can’t sleep, have aches and pains all over my body, have panic attacks, severe mood swings, feel like I have an in-built radiator running on hot all the time. I am very tearful and just feel hopeless to be honest. My GP has put me on anti-depressants and I just don,t feel anyone is listening to me.

I strongly feel that I need to go on to HRT as my symptoms are hormonal. Whether that’s right or wrong I don’t know but, this is the point, I suppose is that everyone is different and their experience is different, recovery time has no time scale. I do feel like the medical profession thinks that one glove fits all and this can lead to women feeling that something is wrong with them after their hysterectomy and they are not recovering in the specified time scale!

I do have to remind myself why I had the hysterectomy in the first place and obviously weigh up the good point and the bad, I was very ill before the op and couldn’t function normally, so in the majority I feel it was the right thing but, I think that women should be given more informed choices and be allowed to ask for what they want.

I am having a blood test tomorrow to see if my hormone level indicates that I am having menopausal symptoms which, I think is the case. Hopefully I will be able to take some form of HRT and will feel much better. I have researched this in depth and found that my story is very common. Whilst I appreciate the controversial side of HRT I do feel that could be said for most drug treatments. I do think you have to be in that situation and experience what I am going through for instance before you judge what is right and wrong. It is the individuals choice and not a lifestyle choice.

I hope that my story would not make any woman wary of having a hysterectomy as the reason I had it was most definitely the right decision. Please remember that every woman is different and will draw different experiences from THEIR HYSTERECTOMY!


in my own words book coverNow available on our online store and all other online book store’s. In My Own Words: Women’s Experience of Hysterectomy is full of many other real-life stories from women the world over.

Other people’s stories help women feel less isolated. They show that they aren’t going mad, missing the point or stupid.

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  1. thanks jacquie your operation sounds very similar to my experience. I had my hysterectomy on 2nd feb 2012 and nearly a year on wish i had never had it. I had a bad expereince at the hospital with uncaring nurses bar one, got urine infection post op infection went back to work after 6 months and am still in pain if i stay on my feet for too long, walking for hours like i used to is out unless i can find a seat to rest intermittently. got overian cyst after 6 months 5cm benign but sore the after care is rubbish been forgotten twice am now going through the menopause and my oestregen is very low so now been offered hrt. sex life has gone got the desire but no internal feeling so to speak. my husband of 32 years is so supportive could not have got through it without him. facing another scan soon to see if the cyst has grown. Have to be grateful to be here its not cancer i nkow but all the same am tired all the time but cant sleep go figure. hope you improve but i think the best thing to do is what i am trying to do which is accept your lot and move forward otherwise you will go potty. take care jan

  2. Hi –
    Thank you for sharing your story – I too had a total hysterectomy in May 2011 after discovering I had so many large fibroids that it was like being 5 month pregnant … and very heavy periods . Before my surgery my doc said you will feel so much better after …. Boy was he wrong – being 46 with 2 grown daughters at the time we had decided on the ovary removal – well turns out that was necessary any way , I was diagnosed with stage 2 ovarian cancer – after recuperating for 5 weeks it was time for chemo – 18 weeks of chemo . My last chemo was October 20 – 2011 now a few scans later I have been in remission as they call it 🙂 so the cancer scare was real BUT my complaint is that I went into full menopause from one day to the next , with no possibility of relieve !! Which really sucks !! I have severe hot flashes every 2 hours — there are a few things natural products etc that my oncologyst has tried but nothing really works … So as far as to feeling better after … yeah that did not happen . On the other hand I am ALIVE 🙂 and that I like !!!

    I wish you all the best and a quick recovery !

  3. Thank you so much for your post Jackie. I am sitting in bed 4 weeks after total hysterectomy with bso feeling like a failure since I seem to be struggling to get over this procedure. Right now I’d just like to turn the clock back and get the very early stage cancer back together with my life. I was beginning to think it was just me that wasn’t dancing back to full time work about now.