Health Library Explorer
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z A-Z Listings Contact Us

July 2023

Recovering from Hysterectomy: What You Should Know

Every year, nearly 500,000 women in the U.S. have a hysterectomy, an operation to remove the uterus. It is the most common type of surgery for women after cesarean section. A hysterectomy can help treat conditions such as fibroids, abnormal vaginal bleeding, endometriosis, and cancer.

Several options for surgery

During the surgery, the uterus is removed though a cut in the abdomen or the vagina. The ovaries and fallopian tubes may also be removed. The surgery can also be done through a few small cuts in the abdomen using a tiny camera, called a laparoscope. This type of surgery is called laparoscopic, or minimally invasive, surgery. The surgeon may also use a robot attached to the instruments to assist in a laparoscopic surgery.

What to expect during recovery

You can expect to stay in the hospital 1 or 2 days after a vaginal or laparoscopic hysterectomy, and longer after an abdominal hysterectomy. When you return home, you will need some additional time to rest and recover. Most women recover 3 to 4 weeks after a laparoscopic or vaginal hysterectomy. It may take 4 to 6 weeks to recover from an abdominal hysterectomy.

You may have some bleeding or discharge after your surgery. You should not take a tub bath, douche, have sex, or put anything into your vagina for six weeks after your surgery.

Side effects of hysterectomy

Once you’ve had a hysterectomy, you will no longer be able to get pregnant. Your monthly periods will also stop. If your ovaries are removed as well, you will go into menopause.

Hysterectomy can help treat many problems and conditions, but it is major surgery. Your healthcare provider can help you decide whether it’s the best treatment for you.



Online Medical Reviewer: Brian McDonough, MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Ray Turley, MSN, BSN
Date Last Reviewed: 6/1/2023
© 2000-2024 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
Contact Our Health Professionals
Follow Us
About StayWell
  • More information
  • (740) 356-5000