How do I prepare for my post hysterectomy? Some hysterectomies are an inpatient procedure — meaning you will be admitted to the hospital to have it done. Be prepared to be away from work for a short time and try to enjoy the time off.
How long you’ll be in the hospital depends on what type of hysterectomy your doctor will be performing, how your surgery goes and how healthy you are. Laparoscopic-assisted surgery could reduce substantially your hospital stay.
Some women leave the recovery room with the catheter that was placed before surgery to keep the bladder empty.
The sooner the catheter is removed the better. Bladder infections can develop, if you leave it after 24 hours.
While it may take you a few weeks or months, depending on which surgery you have had, to recover from the hysterectomy – there are a few things you can do to speed up your hysterectomy recovery.
At home after the post hysterectomy procedure:
• a) You will be given pain relievers prescribed by your doctor. It is crucial to take the pain killers if you have pain and it is good that you are as comfortable as possible during your post hysterectomy period.
• c) Use hot pads if you have pain – consider even buying two of them. Place one over the abdomen and another under it, if necessary.
• d) At the beginning, limit your activity unless your doctor tells you to take some short walks to keep your blood circulating.
• e) Take it easy and make sure you don’t start cleaning the house. Ask family and friends for help or hire a cleaning company to help with housekeeping. Limit your bending for a few weeks and don’t lift anything heavy after the surgery.
• f) Make sure you enjoy your favorite music and television programs while in bed. Read your favorite books and authors. Use headphones if necessary at home or in the hospital.
• g) Learn to relax and enjoy this quite time in your life so you can improve a lot faster. Buy staying relaxed and taking daily vitamins, you will have more resistance to infections and improve your immune system.
• h) Don’t lift anything heavy after the post hysterectomy period. If you need to pick up or carry anything ask someone to help you.
• i) Climbing stairs or driving a car during your convalescence is not a good idea (ask family and friends to help you).
• j) Do not prepare your own meals for a few weeks. Ask a friend or family member to help or order them out so they can be delivered to you.
• k) Find support from family members or perhaps friends and when trying to get up into a seated position, make sure you ask for help.
• l) Avoid drinking alcohol for a few weeks, while recuperating and taking medication.
• m) Don’t take aspirin during your convalescence because it causes deficiencies of folic acid and vitamin C. Dairy foods should be avoided during the post hysterectomy time because it may not help you with constipation. The pain medicine you will be taking during the post hysterectomy time may make you constipated.
During hysterectomy recovery and after hysterectomy make sure you:
• Eat a healthier diet because your body needs nutrients to heal (even if you don’t feel like it). Eat lots of fish as well as free-range chicken, grass-fed beef and turkey, whole-grain foods, soups, salads, organic cooked vegetables and fruits.
• Take time to stay relaxed and take care of yourself. Soon you will be feeling wonderful!
• It is a good idea to always drink filtered water. Drink several glasses of filtered water daily to adequately “flush” your system of biological poisons that your body wants to get ride of.
• Your first two weeks at home will be the most difficult. So take the opportunity to sleep, relax, read, listen to music, eat healthy food until your post hysterectomy is over. Don’t forget to smile and laugh at least once a day…
• Taking omega-3 fatty acids daily is a good idea. It has been shown to reduce inflammation, avoid risk of strokes and heart attacks, improve mental illnesses, help lower cholesterol and thin the blood.
• At the end of two weeks you should start moving around, feeling better every day that goes by, and slowly getting back to your normal activities.
• As you improve during this post hysterectomy recovery time, talk to your doctor about when you can start exercising.
Exercising regularly, when your doctors allows you, will speed up your post hysterectomy progress and improve your sleep. Take walks or use your treadmill when you are home.
Exercise will improve your health! Moderate exercise will improve your energy levels, your immune system and antioxidant levels. With physical activity, your muscles, bones and joints get stronger and healthier.
Women after post hysterectomy should be using “Bioidentical Progesterone Cream” supplementation for good results.
After this procedure you no longer will have menstrual periods nor monthly ovulation, and this means that your body no longer makes enough progesterone to balance estrogen.
Natural progesterone supplementation is your best option because it will protect you against the side effects of unbalanced estrogen.
Natural progesterone cream is absorbed into the bloodstream on a continuous basis as the body needs it.
Rub 1/2 teaspoon of the natural progesterone cream twice daily to several areas of your body:
Place the cream one day on your belly, hands and arms. The following day on your face and neck…and the third day on your thighs and breasts until absorbed. It is a good idea to place the cream in different areas for good absorption.
Use the natural progesterone for 21 to 24 days – more or less trying to mimic your natural menstrual cycle. Discontinue for 5 to 7 days and repeat every month. Read more about natural progesterone cream supplementation here!
If you are postmenopausal or post hysterectomy, you should also be using natural estrogen cream (estriol cream).
After menopause or if you are post hysterectomy, your levels of estrogen production go down 40-60 percent and progesterone production ceases.
Use 2.5 to 5 mg of estriol cream daily or every other day, if you are experiencing hot flashes and night sweats.
If you are taking estrogen, you should also take natural progesterone for balance. This means that you should not use estrogen by itself. Always use it with natural progesterone to keep your hormones balanced. Without progesterone, estrogen has very negative and toxic effects.
During the week following the procedure, watch for the following symptoms:
• Temperatures over 100.6 F (check two or three times a day to see if you have a fever). Call your doctor for advice if your temperature goes up.
• When you experience dizziness
• If you are having swelling
• You have started bleeding at the catheter insertion site
• Fever or pain come back after symptoms have become less intense
Some questions to ask your doctor…
• 1- What medications will be used to treat pain, both in the hospital and post hysterectomy? How long do I need to take the medication for?
• 2- If have an uterine fibroid embolization or hysterectomy, how long will it take to recover and be away from work?
• 3- Find out how long will you stay in the hospital?
• 4- What kind of post hysterectomy follow-up care is typical, and who should you return to or consult with after the procedure for additional care, your gynecologist or your surgical physician?
At the Hospital:
• Prepare a list of important phone numbers and store them in a convenient place during the procedure. Be sure to find out who to call and for what, specifically, in terms of the procedure and recovery period.
• If your doctor is unavailable following the procedure, ask for the name and number of an alternative physician to call and add it to your phone list. If you have an emergency at home in the post hysterectomy period, you may want to have more than one option.
• You may be at the hospital for 2 or 3 days depending on what type of hysterectomy you may be having.