The reluctant patient! – Karen’s Story

I was totally against having a hysterectomy. Even though my family was complete, it was something I didn’t want. Even on the morning of the operation, if the consultant had said we’d found something new to try, I would have packed up and come home.

Now I’m through it and I am 100% better for it! I have more energy, feel happier and no longer have heavy, draining periods for weeks at a time.

The only thing I have to sort out is my night sweats and hot flushes, but I am trying various herbal remedies to try and sort these out. I am now very happy and am glad I went through this major op that has allowed me to get my life back on track. It is a very complicated operation, but, for me, it is one of the best things that has ever happened!


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.

Leave a Reply


  1. Hi Maggie, there are benefits and concerns with every action we take in life and having a hysterectomy is no different. When I read your message though I noticed that it seems to be your own feeling about yourself sexually which has changed and it is likely your partner is telling the truth that nothing has changed for him. When our thoughts about ourselves change it colours everything and we read things other people say to us through the lens of our own bias, thinking ‘if I feel like this, then they must be thinking it really too’.

  2. I was totally against having a hysterectomy but after a post menopausal bleed I was told I had pre cancerous cells and was even more afraid of being pumped full of hormones if I had a mirena coil and having to have regular poking and prodding check ups, for years semed even more terrifying. I had also suffered tummy pains wind, bloating and irritable bowel for years. After researching both options and feeling pressured by my children (they wanted all risks gone) I agreed to a laproscopic Vaginal hyst losing my ovaries as well. I was so upset I mourned my losses for a long time, I was afraid to have a sexual relationship and my partner was afraid to hurt me so our relationship suffered for eighteen months. I became so sad about this I became quite depressed and although we talked about it there was very little improvement and I still feel that although my partner loves me he has changed in the may he responds towards me sexually. I am still able to climax which I was worried about before the op but I feel that psychologically we have both been affected although 2 years on it is getting better. Physically I soon felt well and was walking a few miles after 6 weeks . The biggest suprize for me was that since the operation I have hardly had any irritable bowel type problems apparently I had a lot of scar tissue from having my appendix out over 50 years ago aged 4 years and the surgeon tidied it all up (his words) so that is a bonus I wasnt expecting. It turned out I had adenymosis when they examined my womb which also made sense of why I often suffered labour like pains and often felt I was just about to give birth. I worried about weight gain but am the same weight as when I had the op although I do feel my tummy is a bit swollen in the evenings. Sometimes I think it is great to not be bloated and to have got rid of what could have been potentially dangerous had it developed into cancer, and at other times I miss my baby bag and my diminished sex life which has never returned fully. It is a really difficult decision to make when you have a choice. I do feel lucky that I healed very well and do feel physically well but psychologicay I know I have suffered more, but we are all different.

  3. This is alot how I feel Karen. I am really terrified of having a full hysterectomy as a previous Laparoscopy and Hysteroscopy where they found lots of endo and adhesions tethering bowel to ovary and fallopian adhered the other side. It was such a painful op and morphine made me horribly sick. I think I am now quite traumatized by the thought of an even bigger op. One GP in my practice said ‘it is a big op with risk of further adhesions, think hard before you consider it, another said ‘it might be the answer go for it’, so all very confusing and scarey.
    I am still getting pinching pain in right pelvis and low back pain and now I am in menopause no periods for 6 months now, I am getting a whole variation of symptoms complicated by Diverculitis Disease, Hernia and Prolapse. I never know which is playing up but all I know is I frequently feel sickly and fatigued and need to urinate alot and pain wakes me daily as well as bowel problems and constipation from codeine based pain relief. Strangely I feel best when going for a walk, cannot wear anything remotely tight round my abdomen, waistbands etc. I am hoping menopause might reduce pain and symptoms as oestrogen drops. Last saw Gyne 2 years ago but see Gps often. Live on pain med and stool softners and anti spasmodics and sleep pills (not fun!). Now I am even scared of going too often to the GP as afraid they will send me for the big H! stupid situation I know. I live alone and could not afford private care and am on the first floor with my little nervous stray cat who lives indoors due to a busy road and doesn’t cope well with catteries – she got cystitis last time I took her there so this is another problem for having a Hysterectomy. Plus I would miss taking my friend/neighbours dog out for walks and couldn’t drive. I guess it seems like I am finding excuses but many are real. Reading your experience Karen is comforting, I hear so many not so good stories it just makes the whole thing ie risks of further adhesions, fear of op and pain seem overwhelming. The thought of being unable to even go for a walk after such an op with my friend’s dog for possibly months is depressing. I would be interested to know on average how long it is after a bilateral salpingo oopherectomy before one could realistically go for a dog walk again? I know I will probably eventually arrive at the conclusion I should have this op but although I live with pain and discomfort I am currently in ‘flight and flee’ mode and denial I guess.