How long will recovery take after hysterectomy?


I had a sub total hysterectomy and my ovaries removed 5 weeks ago. I have been researching recovery times and I feel like a total wimp! Some women are stating they were back at work after 6 weeks. I still can't tie my own shoes, dry my hair without taking breaks, walk more than 5 mins outside without stopping or leaning on someone. Any ideas ladies? Also, I'm a teacher, which believe it or not is physically demanding. Any teachers had the same op, if so how long were you off work?

I feel pretty useless right now, and very sad and weepy. :-( xx

8 Replies

  • Hello.

    I had a total hysterectomy with right ovary removal + Excision of Endo, 12 days ago. Recovery wise, I'm very up and down.... Some days are good and other days I am in a lot of pain.

    Recovery is very individual and although some ladies report feeling great after a few weeks, the majority of us will take a few months.

    I am signed off work for eight weeks but I'm hoping I may be well enough to go back after six. But if I need to take longer... My GP has said she will renew my certificate.

    What type of hysterectomy did you have? Mine was done via laparoscopically and my outside infusions are almost healed. But the inside ones take a lot longer to heal! Some articles I've read say the internal healing can take up to a year!

    I think we have to remember that we have gone through major surgery and we have to be patient with ourselves!

    Do you have to go for a post operative check up ? If you do, you can always ask questions then.

    Best if luck with your recivery... Be kind to yourself

    Best wishes,

    Barbara x

    PS being emotionally is completely normal... I cried on Friday when I saw a new born baby ! Daft really.. When I consider I have three wonderful children !

  • I had abdominal surgery. Thanks, I don't feel as though I'm going mad now. Good luck to you too. Hope your recovery goes well xx

  • I had Hysterectomy and my last ovary removed abdominally, 9weeks ago. My bowel was also stuck to uterus, and had to be separated by bowel surgeon! I am back at work, started back last week, but do still get very tired. It's essential to get plenty of rest, but at the same time, gradually build up on the walking for exercise. You will definitely know when you have had enough, and don't over do it! If you still feel awful after week 6 I would ask to see doctor for advice! I had follow up appointment at 8 weeks before returning.

    I do hope you start to feel better soon, but it does take months for inside to heal, and you must still take care!xxxx

  • Sorry I meant incisions not infusions!

  • I've just signed the consent form for my hysterectomy and have been reading the leaflet. This says, among other things, that standing up to iron should be left for 3 - 4 weeks (not that I ever iron anything anyway... but as an example it's useful) and to leave heavier household jobs and gardening for 4 - 6 weeks.

    To me, this means to start gradually doing normal things between 4 to 6 weeks and not that you should be able to function normally for 8 hours a day by this point.

    When I had my last lap and big endo removal, I felt rubbish for a week, got quite a bit better in comparison the next week, but I seemed to stay at that stage for a long time, I was able to potter around but not able to do anything useful and was incredibly tired. Every time I sat down for four months I had searing pain. The op was at the beg of July, then I was back at work for the new term in Sept, but I knew that was too soon really (it was a new job and I really pushed myself to go in at the expense of everything else) Maybe because I didn't rest enough I remember at Christmas finding it exhausting travelling to family only 2 hours away and spending the day sitting on unfamiliar chairs. The whole time I just wanted to lie down.

    I am concerned about how much time I'll have to have off for the hysterectomy. Gynae said I may well not be back for 12 weeks and I think I have to just accept it. My plan is to follow the advice of my neighbour, a retired GP and someone who has had the op herself, she says to go to bed every afternoon, regardless, and potter the rest of the time. This current leaflet also talks about using convenience foods rather than cooking, and I remember feeling that as I was at home I should be cooking proper meals, but I think it is easy to underestimate how tiring all that bending and standing is for your insides.

    Maybe a particular issue for us is that we are all used to functioning with significant levels of pain, so whereas other people would recognise pain as a signal to stop and rest, we ignore it as much as we can and perhaps that delays healing.

    Best of luck x

  • Thanks v much for your reply. It makes so much sense. I have decided to listen to my body. Work can wait! I struggled in for 4 years in crippling pain every day and got no thanks for it, just the expectation that I can cope with anything. I think you are so right about us functioning while in pain that we don't recognise the signals anymore. The body knows best.

    Hope you're op goes well. Take care xxx

  • Hi, I'm six weeks post op following a complete hysterectomy - everything is gone. I'm a teacher and am not considering going back to work yet. I saw the doctor on Friday and he signed me off for another two weeks. I only started driving again on Friday and that zapped my strength (it was only a 20mins drive). So there is no way I could manage the 45min drive to work, then teach all day and deal with all the management tasks etc and then drive home. I also run a girl guide unit and went to my first meeting after the op yesterday. I drove there (10mins), sat down for 1hr 30mins, drove home and felt shattered, so I know I'd be no good for work.

    We all heal differently, my aim is to get back to work on a phased return the week before Xmas - this is so I can get used to being back at work and try and have a hand over period with the supply teacher and the deputy head of department, so I'm ready for the new term in January. Also, my HRT should have kicked in by then and I won't be having these awful hot flushes!!!!

  • Hi. Thanks for your reply. I still can't drive. I was operated on five weeks ago today so I think I will listen to my doctor and body for a change. I have been told no considerations will be made for me at all when I return so I must be 100% fit. That's was my head of department not the depute.

    Hope your recovery continues to go well. Goood luck :-)

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