What is wrong with me?: Hello everyone... - The Hysterectomy ...

The Hysterectomy Association
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What is wrong with me?

Hello everyone! I am 7 weeks post op. I had a full abdominal hysterectomy at the age of 38 because of a huge fibroid and extremely low blood count and was left with 1 ovary. I am really struggling with getting back to the swing of things. I thought after I was cleared from my Dr to go back to work and regular activity that would be the end of it. My stomach is still super swollen especially after work, my stomach is also still numb! My husband and I have had sex a few times but I am so dry and uncomfortable I can’t enjoy it or move my body like I used to. I feel like I’m failing as a wife, mother, and woman. I’m so tired all the time and so afraid to exercise because my body doesn’t feel the same. Any words of wisdom or advice would be so appreciated. Shouldn’t I be feeling better ?

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I had a hysterectomy 6 weeks ago although mine was less invasive - laparoscopic, kept both ovaries and cervix. I know they say 6-8 weeks recovery but for the vast majority of us that's when you can start gently doing normal things again. I was told still nothing strenuous until 12 weeks. Full recovery can take months. Last week I worked 4 x 7 hour days sitting in front of a computer and was so tired at the end of the 7 hours I could barely string a sentence together. Last night I lifted something fairly heavy. Today I am spotting for the first time in four weeks, probably due to the lifting. Yet I would say my recovery has been very good on the whole.

So, to some extent, this recovery is a slow process. Your stomach swelling and numbness sounds consistent with comments from other abdominal ladies on the hysterectomy association monthly clubs (I can't recommend these enough, being able to discuss issues with ladies at a similar stage to you is very reassuring). Also, in your case, going by your comments on the dryness and fatigue, you are experiencing (peri-)menopausal symptoms. Perhaps it's just peri-menopause or perhaps your remaining ovary has not yet recovered from the upheaval but it may be worth seeing a menopause doctor as hrt can help even prior to menopause. GPs can be hit and miss with hrt but you may be lucky.

Has your haemoglobin come up? Are you on iron supplements? I had my hysterectomy for the same reasons as you but don't tolerate iron tablets well so am taking 4 spatone sachets a day. Unfortunately this is expensive but it does seem to be effective. When my iron is low I am exhausted all the time. I'm also taking a general multi-vitamin as blood loss

I hope that helps to some extent and that you continue to improve every day.

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Hi geeky bird! Thank you so much for for all of your feedback and advice. Thankfully my hemoglobin is normal and I’m heading in a better direction. I’m trying to stay positive and reading so many stories on here I definitely don’t feel alone in this.

I’m so sorry to hear that you are still experiencing bleeding, just hang in there and I’m hoping you continue to feel better everyday.

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Bhmomma, I am also 38 and had a partial hysterectomy (leave my two ovaries and my cervix) because I had lots of fibroids in July 2017. My belly is still swollen and numb! It's true that it takes lots of time and patience. It's not easy to make exercises but walking and eat healthy helps enormously with the swollen belly, trust me. Try to walk at least 1 hour daily, you won't regret it :) . I still feel tired but is much less than before. You haven't failed as a mom, woman or anything! You just had a really invasive procedure and the recovery is slow and difficult. Don't blame yourself and think how the surgery has improved your life quality...remember the days when the fibroids made you bleed to the extreme, the pain....believe me, the surgery was worth it :)

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AnMZ912, Thank you for all the advice. Sharing your story makes me feel like I am not crazy. I’m going to keep at it and try to listen to my body instead of my crazy thoughts and expectations.When was your surgery?

Please keep me posted on how you are doing. Wishing you all the best.

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It was on July 2018. It's difficult I know. And the surgery it's rare at our age, so it's difficult to share with other people of your same age that didn't have problems with fibroids. After the surgery the body changes completely. One think that I've noticed is that I have gain so much weight! But I'm patient, the body is recovering and the core is completely weak. Message me whenever you want ;) I'm glad my comment helped :)

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You are still very early in your recovery. I was advised 12 weeks off work and tbh it took nearly twelve months before i was running on full steam and my hyster was TLH RSO with stage 4 endo excision. Your body still has a lot of healing to do inside and its important to rest when you need to. Build things up slowly. The better you look after yourself now the better the long term outcome. x

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Hi Bhmomma81

Sorry for the late reply and I hope you’re feeling a little better now. Recovery can take a lot longer than the 6 - 8 weeks they usually say as there is a lot of healing going on inside. It took me 11 weeks to get back to work and even then I was exhausted by it. Take it easy and let your body heal and it will tell you when it’s ready. I can honestly say it took me 2 years to recover fully.

The vaginal dryness is most likely caused by low oestrogen levels and the surgery may well have pushed you into menopause. Even though you have 1 ovary still, a Hysterectomy can stop them working properly. If you don’t want fully systemic HRT, then vaginal oestrogen would probably work well for you. It’s only local, and works well. You’d probably also benefit from vaginal moisturiser and/or lubricant but do check the ingredients as some more well known brands contain ingredients that can create perfect conditions for thrush etc. If you’d like to know my favourite brand, feel free to pm me.

Rachael xx

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Thank you so much for the advice Rachel. I would love to know your favorite brand to use for dryness. I am doing better but it is still slow going. I’m going to try to start walking regularly and trying light exercises. It’s so good to know that I’m not alone in this crazy journey, it is so much more than I was expecting.

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I’ve messaged you with the brands I use. Take it easy, light exercise and rest are the answer. Walking is great, but build it up gradually and gentle exercises like pelvic tilts and knee drops are what my physiotherapist taught me. Lie on your back, knees bent and let one knee open to the side, only as far as is comfortable. Back to centre and repeat on the other side. Xx

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Hello to you Bhmomma81,

Am post op 14 weeks radical TAH+BSO. I'll comment especially on swollen tummy coz up to now, I feel so sore when I sit for long, move and travel by any means. Bumpy rides are aweful. I resumed work last month. It's not a job ride at all. Back ache. By the time I get home, I feel like a punching bag.

Exercising, I only do walks, nothing much. It's a journey, that's what a second opinion from another Dr taught me. Something my OBN/GYN wasn't telling me. To him I was due works along time ago.

Healing also differs from woman to another.

Be careful and patient with yourself. I hope I was of some help.

🎃

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Hi Lunje,

Thank you for sharing your story with me. I’m so sorry you are still suffering with getting back to your normal. I put a cold compress on my belly and sides and that seems to help take the edge off. Rides are still very difficult for me as well. My doctor seems to think I need to relax and give myself time to heal and I’m putting too much pressure on myself. It’s so nice to know I’m not alone in this. Although I wish this recovery process on no one.

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Thanks Bhmomma81,

Sometimes I feel like I got to get used to this. But I remember my little blacks, blues, white dresses! Then the 👖!!!! Then I ask God to save and heal me from this agony so I can be more than normal me. I usually encourage myself by saying that am back for remodeling. When I come out of all this,,,I shall be a better version of me😁😘😁🙌

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Hi I’m 7weeks post op. After a full Hysterectomy, and am still swollen and bloated(eating a Windeze as I tx) and still numb.The only support I have had is through this forum and a lady in hospital who has gone through the same. From what i’ve Read the swelling and the bloated feeling could last as long as 12mnths. I bled a lot which left my haemoglobin depleted and extreme tiredness and headaches I am Left with.The dragging feeling I get is usually down to overdoing it, we have undergone major surgery and I like you am shocked how much it’s taken out of us. Your doing really well if you are back in work and having sex. I am not their yet, I believe we will need Lubricants for sex due to not having any oestrogen or progrsterone(one of those). I have a physical job and am not returning just yet, I do not want to end up back in with a prolapse or hernia; I would like to go back for the money but your health comes first. Talk to your dr and ask for a blood test as it’s left me with anaemia through the blood loss I am currently on iron tablets for the tiredness and have upped the fiber to help with opening my bowels. Listen to your body and try not overdo it, it’s time now to take care of yourself. Hope this helps a little.x

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It can take up to a full year to heal after surgery

I'm 1 yr post OP

Had TAH,ovaries kept

I had uterine fibroids and endometriosis. I felt the same way you feel now. Sex is completely different. Not in a good way. Lube will be y'alls bf during sex,lol. Every since I've had mine it feels like its reeked havoc on my body and my marriage. Hope things get better for you!

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Hi

I am coming up to a year post TAH BSO. I agree with all the previous posts .. take it easy on yourself.

Things I did..

Walk every day, just around the block to start with, increasing in small increments.

Pelvic floor exercises!

I started back at the gym at 8 weeks with a PT, listen to your body only doing what is comfortable with light weights. I also started back to yoga, again listen to what is comfortable for you.

HRT and oestrogen pessaries. Lubes defo help, but not always required. Sex was a bit different to start with but now is great and as enjoyable as before if not better. Stick with it, keep your expectations realistic.

I hope that helps. A bit

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