Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Hysterectomy not tied to greater depression risk?

This article has made the media rounds. If something is repeated often enough it will be believed.

HERS Response is awaiting 'approval' as of the date and time of this post. This is the HERS Foundation's response to this "study":

Among my observations of flaws in this study is the disparity in the number of female subjects. There were 1,793, of women with intact female organs, and only 76 women with hysterectomy alone, and 101 women whose uterus and ovaries had been removed. You need an e
qual number of women in each group to have a meaningful statistical result.

I object to the use of obscure and incorrect medical language. Surgical menopause, or surgically induced menopause, is an oxymoron. An intact menopausal woman has functioning a uterus and ovaries. The uterus continues to be a hormone responsive sex organ that provides structural support to the bladder and bowel all of a woman's life. The ovaries continue to produce hormones, albeit in different quantity, into advanced age.

The following is the Hysterectomy Educational Resources and Services (HERS) Foundation's study on the effects of hysterectomy reported by 1,000 women. HERS did not ask whether women if they were depressed after hysterectomy, they asked questions that would be revealing of depression, and found the following occurred after hysterectomy:

Hysterectomy only               Hysterectomy/ovaries

Suicidal thoughts 53%       -      Suicidal thoughts 54%
Suicide Attempt 9%           -      Suicide Attempt 10%
Personality change 76%     -      Personality change 80%
Loss of sexual desire 66%   -      Loss of sexual desire 80%
Loss of orgasm 54%           -      Loss of orgasm 63%

The full report of the effects of hysterectomy can be read at http://www.hersfoundation.com/effects.html.

Nora W. Coffey
President, HERS Foundation

91 Comments:

At May 5, 2012 at 2:17 PM , Anonymous Alice said...

I've been depressed 4 years since I was destroyed by the surgeons. 4 long years of having no other thoughts than killing myself, anger, sadness.
I'm tired of well intentioned (delusional?) Dr's telling me things will get better, give it time. Isn't 4 years enough time?

 
At May 8, 2012 at 2:44 PM , Anonymous Jim said...

My Wife had her Hysterectomy almost three years ago. A life changing event. She has had no comfort from the medical community. She is so sad and depressed. She has lost so much weight... She has had nothing but one problem after another since her surgery. She is not the only one who has a major depression. It has taken our relationship and turned it up side down and our lives also. I am her husband and even I am very depressed and sad over this. No one told us this would happen. Informed consent??? Really?? HA no such thing. I am sorry to all the women out there that suffer do to the quack doctors. We pray for you Alice and every other woman out there who fights every day just to have some sort of meaning in life, for that surgeon not only took my wifes organs. That Surgen took her will to live.

 
At May 9, 2012 at 10:49 AM , Anonymous Paula said...

I am one of the women who said NO to a hysterectomy. Five doctors told me I needed one because I had fibroid tumors. They wanted to remove all of my female parts. I contacted the Hers Foundation and they were of the greatest help. I found out that after menopause the fibroid tumors shrink. I was near menopause. That was nearly 20 years ago. I am now 72 and still have sexual desires and have a healthy sex life.

 
At May 10, 2012 at 10:12 AM , Anonymous Robbed said...

My gyn robbed me of my happiness and zest for life as well as my loving, nurturing feelings. I had never suffered from depression yet almost immediately after my hysterectomy, I became suicidally depressed (along with many other common post-hysterectomy and post-castration issues).

And just as devastating as the loss of my body’s own hormones is the loss of my beautiful intact figure. I’m now left with the not-so-attractive post-hyst figure and the resulting back and hip problems.

 
At May 10, 2012 at 5:27 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Please use your name or choose an alias so that people can follow the "Voice" in a discussion. Anonymous posts will be deleted.

Please read HERS Blog Guidelines at the top of the page.

Thank you.

 
At May 11, 2012 at 8:24 PM , Anonymous Rose said...

Even with this flawed 'study' it clearly shows an increase in depression....

Natural menopause - 8.6
Hysterectomy - 9.37
Hysterectomy with ovaries removed -10.96
So there is a 20% increase between Natural and Hyst with ovaries.
I am not sure how the author interprets this as no increase risk.... If there were equal Hyst and natural subjects the disparity in depression would probably be larger.

 
At May 14, 2012 at 9:26 AM , Anonymous Cathy said...

The only purpose of this study is to SELL hysterectomy. These studies are aimed at getting more business for gyno-quacks. They aren't making big money unless they are mutilating women.

I wonder if they'd find it depressing to have 15 hot flashes a day? My intact mother barely had a hot flash going through menopause, but after being mutilated by a doctor, I'm hot all the time like a pot belly stove, and I look like one too.

 
At May 14, 2012 at 6:04 PM , Anonymous Damaged Goods said...

We know all too well the hysterectomy industry’s tactics – “rigged” studies, silencing those who speak the truth, and having the minions do their bidding.

Where are those with some ethics? They're obviously few and far between.

 
At May 20, 2012 at 7:04 PM , Anonymous piper4574 said...

I had a total abdominal hysterectomy and have had none of these issues. Sure, I had a few down days during recovery (initial 4-6 weeks post-op), but doesn't everybody after a major surgery, and especially a surgery that we women hope to avoid?

The study done by HERS shows over 50% sexual dysfunction post-hysterectomy. That's amazingly high. I expect around 10% of women might have issues with sex/orgasm/relationships after surgery, but so do many women who have never had a hysterectomy. And what about sexual issues that happen because of the many reasons a woman might opt for a hysterectomy in the first place? Surely many women report anger, depression, suicidal thoughts, and sexual dysfunction due to heavy bleeding, fibroids, cysts, painful sex, etc.

I guess I am a very special woman since I have gone through the fire and emerged on the other side happier, healthier, more functional, more sexually satisfied, and ready to FINALLY live my life pain and monthly hemorrhage free.

Anyway, yes, there are options and I recommend trying those first as well. I did BCPs, I did diet changes, I did ablation, I had several failed pregnancies and infertility treatments that were supposed to help. None did. But TAH did.

We're all different. Peace in whatever you choose.

 
At May 20, 2012 at 10:44 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

piper,

Let's talk about what you tell other women about your post-hysterectomy experience so that no woman is left thinking that it is possible to be unchanged and therefore, undamaged, by hysterectomy.

You said that you have had "none of these issues". If you had no loss of uterine orgasm, it's understandable, it means you never experienced uterine orgasm, so you have not lost it.

Women are not reporting sexual "dysfunction" after hysterectomy, they report loss of physical sexual sensation. Dysfunction is "malfunction" of an organ or structure of the body. Women report "loss" of physical sexual sensation, loss of uterine orgasm, and loss or decrease of sensation in the vagina, labia and nipples.

It is not merely over 50% of women who have loss of sexual feeling, it is 75% of women who report loss of or diminished sexual desire, 64% who report loss of or diminished sexual desire and 60% report loss of orgasm.

You may indeed be a very special person, but the damaging effects of hysterectomy are universal. Your uterus supported your bladder and bowel, your bowel drifted down to take up the space where your uterus had been and now sits directly upon the top of your shortened vagina.

Having said that, your experience is unarguable, the same as it would be if you said you had a leg amputated and you are unchanged, you continue to walk exactly as you did before your leg was amputated.

Thank you for sharing your personal experience. HERS hopes that you will tell women advised to undergo hysterectomy to watch HERS "Female Anatomy" video so that they can make a fully informed decision about whether they will allow their female organs to be removed.

 
At May 21, 2012 at 8:01 AM , Anonymous MaryAnn said...

Well put, Nora! Thank you for bringing the truth to light.

Who knows if it was even a ligitimate woman patient and not a gynecologist that wrote the silly remarks.

 
At May 22, 2012 at 9:33 AM , Anonymous Buffaloed said...

Last week I attended the National Women's Health Week function promoted by the Millard Fillmore Hospital in Buffalo, held at the Boulevard Mall. It was disappointing to say the least.

Changes to try to avoid hysterectomy were not presented such as vacations (women are known to bleed more when under stress and working hard, especially when the are tired, overworked, and approaching the age of menopause), watchful waiting(fibroids may shrink after menopause), weight loss, decrease of fatty foods that might increase the growth of fibroids, nor do they tell you that fibroids are benign, common growths.

The robotics patient information begins with the scare tactic, CANCER. It goes on to say that hysterectomy is the second most common surgical procedure for women in the United States and that one out of three women will have a hysterectomy by the time they are 60. But it does not say that 98% of hysterectomies are elective and that only 2% are for cancer!!!!

The USA is the laughing stock of the world, castrating and sterilizing women who lay down like sacrificial lambs to be sterilized/castrated, more than any nation in the world. It is no wonder the statistics show that we are a less healthy nation , spending more money on health care than any country in the world, doing this amount of unnecessary hysterectomies, than many countries that do not have our standard of living and spend much less on their health care system.

There is a Public Health regulation in New York state about hysterectomy informed consent. The regulation recommends that doctors give women an information sheet about the consequences of hysterectomy. It is up to the discretion of gynecologists whether to provide that information. The Intuitive Surgical da Vinci robotic surgery exhibit did not provide information about the consequences of hysterectomy. Drs. are taught to cut, but now they can do it with the exciting, new, wonderful da Vinci robotics surgical system. The do not tell you that 11 women have died from the surgery, or other problems or complications.

Regardless of how the surgery is performed, the radical adverse consequences/changes from the surgery are the same. These gynecologists need to pay their salaries and hospitals need to pay for this expensive equipment, all at the expense of a woman's crown jewels, their sexual organs, that are thrown into the garbage, or maybe when ovaries are removed they sell the eggs for in vitro fertilization, or brand them with a branding iron. It is a crime against healthy women and our society. When will it cease? We live in a capitalistic society, and it seems like the medical schools will not change this barbaric, criminal lucrative surgery/practice, the goldmine of gynecology. Healthy women are cut down in the prime of their lives, deprived of a natural aging process, and their former good health, vim and vigor, and active sex life.

Hysterectomy must cease for benign conditions. Women must value their sexual organs, as men value theirs. The ovaries secrete estrogen for a lifetime, albeit in smaller amounts, which affects every cell in the body. Testosterone and progesterone are also beneficial to a woman's sex life, and much more. The uterus secretes prostacylin and prostaglandin which are beneficial to the heart and the cardiovascular system.

Women need to be educated about retaining the organs that god gave them, a miracle of nature and the most sophisticated in the animal kingdom. They need to stay away from gynecologists! Internists can do pap smears and an internal exam. Buyer beware!

 
At May 22, 2012 at 9:12 PM , Anonymous Robbed said...

Yes, women need to be educated about the lifelong functions of their sex organs. But we're up against many forces to withhold this information - not only doctors and hospitals, but also "health" websites including forums, and women who've had hysterectomies and encourage others to do the same.

WebMD is one website that's decided that women who're too vocal about the consequences of hysterectomy are "disruptive" and no longer welcome. Yet those who post misinformation, personally attack others, and assure women that they'll be fine after hysterectomy are allowed to stay.

 
At May 22, 2012 at 9:41 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

This has happened to several women at other blogs. Some of them invented different aliases by using a different email address. They changed their tactics a little, and started posting information from medical journals. It's worth a try!

It's very sad that some hysterectomized women encourage others to undergo hysterectomy, knowing that it will leave them damaged. HERS blog is widely read, and women talk openly and honestly about how hysterectomy has damaged their bodies, their health and their lives.

We are making enormous headway in informing women of the common reasons hysterectomy is recommended, the alternatives in treatment, and the most important issue, the consequences of hysterectomy and castration. It is knowing the adverse effects of the surgery that motivates women to choose a conservative alternative.

Keep posting on HERS blog, it is widely read, and other blogs and articles. HERS has received many emails from women who decided against hysterectomy because they learned from women who commented on posts about the damaging effects of the surgery.

It's all because of you, every woman who comes forward and educates other women about the effects of the surgery saves numerous others from the same fate.

In the last four months, since HERS received a Grant that allows us to post Google Ads free, the increased visibility on the Internet has tripled our volume of phone calls and email. Many of those women will read the blog, and as most of you know, blogs have many more readers than those who make comments. The majority of people go to blogs to get information, but many do not want or need to comment.

 
At May 24, 2012 at 2:55 AM , Anonymous Cathy said...

In response to Piper (who I believe is a shill). It would be ridiculous to think that only 10% of women would have sexual problems after their sex organs were amputated. They don't have any sex organs, duh? It sounds equally ridiculous if you only suspected 10% of men to have sexual problems after they were castrated and their penis was shortened. Gyno-quacks have a vested interest in making women believe the unbelievable, that they can amputate your sex organs without affecting your sexual function.

 
At May 24, 2012 at 9:56 AM , Anonymous Robbed said...

I doubt piper will be singing the praises of having her sex organs removed when she realizes the horror of what it does to her figure. Although I'm sure she'd never admit these changes.

 
At May 29, 2012 at 12:20 PM , Anonymous Veronica said...

I was pressured by Dr. Moos in Pinetop/Lakeside, Arizona to have a hysterectomy due to what he said was a tumor attached to the long ligament, which could cause bleeding. I had gone in for a "well woman" physical since it had been several years since I'd seen a doctor. I was 40.
While I had few immediate problems following the surgery, in 1996 I began to experience severe abdominal pain. After five years of being told I was lactose intolerant, had IBS, needed to eat more vegetables, etc., a very kind ob-gyn surgeon in Flagstaff, Arizona, did exploratory surgery in 2001. He found "massive" adhesions, the result of the hysterectomy. His surgery saved my life. Overnight I felt more like myself than I had in years. Now, 11 years later, the pain (and I suspect the adhesions) is back. Two years ago, Dr. Lee at a Mayo clinic in rural Minnesota castigated me for having the hysterectomy more than 25 years previously and told me to get stool softeners and see a psychologist.
Now 66, 26 years after my hysterectomy, I continue to deal with both persistent pain and arrogant, demeaning doctors.
My point is that, as others have said, the damage can impact one's life for years after the original surgery is performed. It's affected me professionally and personally because the adhesions caused bowel and digestive issues. I will forever regret not standing up for myself and not walking away from the doctor who pressured me into this unnecessary surgery. My intuition told me he was wrong; I should have listened. Thank you for the opportunity to speak about this for the first time.

 
At May 29, 2012 at 4:18 PM , Anonymous piper4574 said...

Just because I have not experienced bad effects from my surgery does not automatically make me a fake - I would never tell another woman that her terrible experience from a hysterectomy is not valid simply because mine has been nothing but a major relief. Like I said, we are all different.

I just think that studies are misleading, especially since many women opt for surgery after many years of alternative treatments that fail and lots of suffering - it's not like most women WANT this surgery. In fact, I would suspect that many women who have had it are a lot like myself in that they tried many other options but they just did not work.

When you get to that point, of course you are depressed, anxious, hurting, scared, and worried about the after effects. Of course you wonder if you will ever be the same, and you know that logically, you won't be because parts are missing...that's just the reality. And it sucks.

But even without my uterus, I am happier. I don't hurt. I am not bleeding to the point of anemia. I am not suffering in the sex department - in fact, it's better now because I am not in pain and I can actually enjoy it. Do these statements make me a fake, or a shill? You are all free to think whatever you choose. But I am healthier than I have been in years, and not only do all the follow up tests say so, but my overall sense of well-being does, too.

Is this for everybody? No! It's a last resort. It was MY last resort.

But I do think that trying to scare women is just as bad as misleading them to think hysterectomy is a first option. Both sides of this debate need to consider each case as an individual one with certain needs and desired outcomes.

There are many women happy with their decision and there are many that are not. I am simply pointing out that I was fortunate and I believe I am not really all that special.

Another thing is that many women are depressed and suffering from problems before the surgery as well. Some find relief, some don't.

For me, it was a great decision. That's all I am saying. And I think that in order to argue an issue effectively, all sides need to be considered, not just the side you want to support.

That's all I am going to say aside from that I truly wish you all well in whatever route you choose. Peace.

 
At June 3, 2012 at 10:01 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Last week, Anderson (Cooper) did a show about forced sterilization. This injustice occurred over decades and was done to some of those viewed as less desirable (e.g., mentally or physically challenged, orphaned, people of color, underprivileged, rebellious, etc). North Carolina passed legislation on May 31, 2012 granting reparations of $50,000 to victims who were forcibly sterilized between 1929 and 1974. Here’s an article - http://jezebel.com/5914712/north-carolina-passes-bill-granting-reparations-to-victims-of-forced-sterilization-but-is-it-nearly-enough

Now it’s time for the voices of victims of hysterectomy and castration to be heard and for the carnage to end. I wonder if Anderson will let us tell our stories?

 
At June 11, 2012 at 3:42 PM , Anonymous Cathy said...

Piper, if you are not a shill or fake, I apologize. The other side of it is that over 1/3rd of the female population in the U.S. have been hysterectomized. Over 1 in 3. That means out of every three women that you see, more than one have been hysterectomized. The numbers are astronomical! This isn't about a helpful surgery for a few women with pain, but one that has been forced on millions of women by deception. As you say, it's not for everyone, but do you really think that over 1/3rd of the female population wanted it done? The voices of those who were tricked and scammed are never heard, and many women don't even know that it was totally unnecessary (who would tell them? not a doctor). As a comparison, there is a large movement regarding autism which now affects about 1 in 88 children. That statistic is considered enormous, yet the fact that over 1 out of 3 women in the U.S. do not have a uterus is being ignored. Being hysterectomized by a doctor isn't a disease, it isn't a mystery, it is done by a doctor with a knife to over 1/3rd of women, over 600,000 a year, every year. Try to speak out and be heard about how the #1 unnecessary surgery (hysterectomy) is being performed without medical necessity on so many women, and see how far you get. There is no voice for the victims of this unnecessary surgery. So, is there really two sides to it?

 
At June 11, 2012 at 11:04 PM , Anonymous Damaged Goods said...

How ironic that Catholic providers and employers don't want to be forced to provide contraception under the new health care law. Yet they have no problems hysterectomizing and castrating women in their hospitals throughout the country.

Oh but wait - Providing contraceptives could resolve some of the problems that lead to hysterectomy. How self-serving!

 
At June 18, 2012 at 10:03 AM , Anonymous Cassie said...

Think about it... doctors don't make their money doing pap smears or having office visits... they like to do surgery and that is profitable for them... look up the county records for your doctor and see the prices of the houses he owns and you will have insight into why he continues to perform unnecessary surgeries... it's not about the health or best interest of the women... it's about his pocket book. He wants financial gain for his time and expense of medical school.

 
At June 23, 2012 at 5:33 PM , Anonymous Cathy said...

A good example of how these criminals are protected:
http://www.patient-safety.com/burt.htm

 
At June 24, 2012 at 10:56 AM , Anonymous Damaged Goods said...

I urge every woman who had a hysterectomy without informed consent to tell your story as part of Consumer Unions' Safe Patient Project. Here's the website - http://safepatientproject.org/share_your_story.

Your story would pertain to two categories listed on this webpage - Doctor Accountability and Overtreatment - so it should be submitted twice.

Let's do as much as we can to spotlight the overuse and harm of hysterectomy.

 
At June 28, 2012 at 1:20 AM , Anonymous negra culona said...

Has anybody here suffers hysterectomy? Does it affect woman's sexual life? hysterectomy

 
At June 29, 2012 at 10:42 AM , Anonymous Damaged Goods said...

negra culona -
Your sex life will likely be destroyed by hysterectomy. Here's a link to survey results from 1000 women - http://hersfoundation.com/effects.html. These results include all indicators of sexuality as well as other post-hysterectomy adverse effects. Some of the sexual changes reported are:

75% - diminished or absent sexual desire
66% - diminished or absent pleasure with intercourse
66% - diminished or absent sexuality
62% - diminished or absent pleasure with foreplay
60% - diminished or absent orgasm
54% - diminished or absent sensation in vagina
44% - diminished or absent sensation in clitoris

Click on the link to read all the awful adverse effects of hysterectomy. It's about much more than sex and affects every aspect of your life!

 
At July 3, 2012 at 8:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do a few women that I know say their sex lives are great despite having this operation?

Carrie

 
At July 4, 2012 at 1:43 AM , Anonymous Cathy said...

Carrie, that's a very good question, I've asked myself the same question. The uterus and ovaries are female sex organs, so does it make logical sense that anyone could have great sex without their sex organs? Could a man have great sex with a similar operation, i.e., his penis shortened, his testicles removed, and his prostate removed? If you've ever had a female cat or dog and had them spayed, you see an immediate and dramatic change in behavior. Even though the animal doesn't know it has been de-sexed, it is no longer interested in sex, nor do males pursue them. Do you think it would be difficult for some women who know they don't have their sex organs to admit that they've lost their sexuality? Would it make them feel more normal to tell everyone sex is great even if it isn't? It's no small thing to be sterilized and castrated, and I wonder, how could anyone male/female be the same? It even becomes more crystal clear when you read a surgical report and understand how much damage is done when the uterus and/or ovaries are amputated. Severing the massive blood supply that goes through the uterus to the genitals, cutting the top of the vagina off and sewing it into a pocket, not to mention all the ligaments and nerves that are severed. If you look at the anatomy drawings on the HERS site, you can even see the nerve branches going to the spine, that are no longer connected after hysterectomy. It appears the same on the outside, but it's pretty mutilated where you can't see. How could anyone have great sex or even achieve an orgasm after that?

 
At July 11, 2012 at 9:32 AM , Anonymous Christine said...

I appreciate all of the information regarding hysterectomy and how to avoid surgery using other treatments. But can you provide information and help for those of us who had to have a total hysterectomy because of gynecological cancers? I had to have a hysterectomy recently and have not had any help or advice from my surgeon. He said go live your life. I am a different person now. I have absolutely no estrogen because I have to take a medication given to women with estrogen positive breast cancers because the uterine cancer I had was estrogen receptive. How do I live my life with no hormones?

 
At August 10, 2012 at 9:56 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Christine,
I'm sorry no one replied. I wish I had an answer but I don't However, I know women who've had gyn cancers who take hormones to give them some quality of life. If that's what you want to do, seek out a doctor who's willing to Rx them. Also, be sure to get a copy of your records so you understand the type and stage of cancer and can confirm that you did indeed have cancer. There are women who've been told they did only to find out that they did not. Sad but true.

 
At August 11, 2012 at 10:28 AM , Anonymous HERS Foundation said...

Christine, there are some things that you can do that will improve the way you feel, without taking hormones that put you at risk for cancer.

It would be more productive for you individually to call HERS to discuss your specific symptoms and what might help cope and mediate what you're experiencing. You can schedule a telephone appointment to speak with a counselor by calling Jacqueline at HERS at 610.667.7757.

Since I do not know your specific symptoms, I will address broadly some things that help with common symptoms such as hot flashes, insomnia, fatigue, weight gain and irritability. Japanese acupuncture is often very helpful for all of those symptoms. Chinese and the English acupuncture are not as effective. Do not expect to feel a difference immediately, it may take three of four treatments before you begin to feel the benefit.

Exercise is critically important. It may seem too difficult if you feel profoundly fatigued, so you may need to make yourself do it when you don't feel up to it. Buy a cheap cotton jump rope at a store like
KMart. After you empty your bladder in the morning jump rope, keeping your feet together, not jumping one foot after the other. Jumping with your feet together will keep it from hurting your feet and knees. Jump until you start tripping over the rope, that's when you will need to stop. It's an excellent cardiovascular work out, and it will keep the muscles in your feet, legs, pelvis and lower back strong. This is important because muscles support your bones, including your spine. You may not feel like jumping rope when you wake up in the morning, but do it anyway, you will have more energy and it will help to maintain or lose weight. There's no excuse not to, you don't have to go to a gym, and it can be raining or snowing and it doesn't affect you because you're jumping rope in the house. It's preferrable to jump rope on a plain, not patterned, rug if possible.

There are breathing exercises that can help you fall asleep. A HERS counselor can tell you how to do them.

Those are a few of the coping mechanisms that may help you with your symptoms. There may be more, depending upon your specific symptoms.

 
At August 20, 2012 at 9:29 AM , Anonymous Lori said...

It helped me to exercise in water. I joined the YMCA and it is a big help to just walk across the water in the deep water with a belt around your waist to hold you up. It's great exercise and is an easy way to get started.

Lori

 
At August 24, 2012 at 9:38 AM , Anonymous annie said...

It has actually got worse for me despite being on antidepressants.

I was falsely told I needed a hysterectomy for ovarian 'cancer'. My internal sex organs were free from cancer.

5 years on and I'm shitting my pants regularly. I have little bowel control.

 
At August 25, 2012 at 12:21 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

Annie,
I'm sorry you too were victimized by the fraudulent hysterectomy industry. My gynecologist whom I'd trusted for two decades also used ovarian cancer scare tactics. And Cigna authorized the surgery despite no evidence of any uterine problem and no history whatsoever of any female problems - just the recent development of a cystadenoma. And to add insult to injury, a referral to an oncologist just "sealed the deal" because the oncologist enabled the gyn. And two gyn residents were complicit.

I understand the depression; I was suicidal for over a year. I've had bowel problems too - diarrhea for almost a year post-op and my bowels are still problematic.

 
At September 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM , Anonymous Molly said...

Hi I am now 42 years old I had hysterectomy 2 years ago at the age of 40. The drs talked me into having a hysterectomy because I am brcca 2 positive. My sister passed away from breast cancer at the age of 46. she had the same cancer genes as I do. the doctors wanted me to get a full hysterectomy and a double mastectomy. I had the hysterectomy which took out my uterus my cervix my tubes and both ovaries. after having a hysterectomy I decided not to have the mastectomy. since hysterectomy I have never been the same. I am somebody else I cannot explain how I feel. but my life is completely different. my son who i was always very close with is now 13 years old. and all I do is yell at him. he's not even doing anything wrong he is my whole world but for some reason I get angry very easily. I don't wanna ruin my relationship with my son. it's not only with him. I get very angry very quickly. I was never like this before. And I am starting to get worried. The littlest thing will set me off. And then I can't calm down for at least an hr or so. I have no patience. She's lost alot off my desires in life. Things that use to make me happy dont any more. I feel like I'm just trying to get through each day. is i am online at a store and the person ahead of me is taking too long I get to the point where I want to really hurt that person. my adrenaline start pumping so fast and I feel like I cannot control myself. I really want to hurt them. and because I know I cant my heart starts racing. and I start having a panic attack. I do not want to be like this I was never like this before and I am ashamed to be like this. I truly believe this all had to do with the hysterectomy. I'm upset because the doctors kept telling me you need to have the operation or you will have cancer. the 1 dr said in front of my son who was 10 at the time what is more important you having a hysterectomy or you being alive and watching your son grow up. after my son heard this heasked me to have the operation. I asked the doctor will it change who I am and how I feel he said it could a little for a little while. it has now been 2 years and I get worse everyday. I talked to my primary care physician about the way I'm feeling and they just give me xanax and wellbutrin which doesn't do anything. I just want to be me again I want to be happy and I want to have the life that I had before the operation. if I had to make a choice today I would definitely say no to the hysterectomy and take my chances. if anybody else is going through this please tell me how to get through this I just want to have my life back. and save my relationship with my son before it's too late.

 
At September 19, 2012 at 9:34 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

Molly,
I'm so sorry that you too were a victim of the hysterectomy industry! I know all too well how you're feeling. I experienced the same and didn't want to live any more. My relationships with my children and husband are different and I mourn the loss of the closeness that used to be there.

Yes, genetic testing is now just another marketing gimmick in gynecologists' bag of tricks! So very sad!

I try to warn women who're considering hysterectomy about these many changes. But all too often they trust their doctors and accuse me of using scare tactics. We all need to speak out and stop this madness!

 
At September 20, 2012 at 10:34 AM , Anonymous Molly said...

Susan, thank you for responding to me. I did fall for their scare tactics. You know...don't you wanna see your son grow up? Are you being fair to your family? Etc. the worst part now is that I now find out that I got infected with hep c. Which had to be during the hysterectomy. I never used drugs. I know that I gave blood not that long ago and they test it for that. so I'm figuring that that its the only way I could have gotten it. My husband doesn't have it. I asked my dr for my blood results from before my hysterectomy but I have been getting the run around for the past month. I can't seem to get them. So basically I went to the hospital to have an operation so that I don't get cancer and come out even worse. Because now I feel that people if they knew would look at me like I'm some kind of drug addict. But the drs got their pay and their doing good and I guess that's all that matters.

 
At September 24, 2012 at 9:13 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

Molly,
Yes, definitely get your records from the surgeon and the hospital. I don't know the statute of limitations in your state but it seems that the date your Hep C was diagnosed would be the start date versus the date of the hysterectomy. Maybe HERS can give you some tips to find a medical malpractice lawyer.

 
At September 24, 2012 at 9:25 AM , Anonymous Chloe said...

My mother use to have hepatitis C and she took a cellular nutrition called Usana essentials. Her liver rebuilt itself and she no longer has it. Maybe that would help you, too.

Chloe

 
At September 24, 2012 at 9:26 AM , Anonymous Tammy said...

When a doctor that told me I had cancer would not give me my records, I sat in the waiting room and said I am going to sit here until you copy those records. I had the records not long after that. Maybe you can get a court order and go after the dirty dog.

 
At September 29, 2012 at 11:29 AM , Anonymous Cathy said...

Molly, request your records in writing through the mail, and add delivery confirmation. That way you have a paper trail.

 
At September 30, 2012 at 9:16 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

Molly,
I can't stop thinking about how your doctor bullied you through your son. Many of us were bullied but using your son was even more reprehensible.

Please get your records and try to get justice. If a lawsuit isn't possible, file complaints with your state's medical board and your insurance company. I know medical boards don't usually discipline doctors but at least you'll have tried. Also, rate him on every doctor rating website you can find.

 
At October 1, 2012 at 12:00 PM , Anonymous Molly said...

What are the doctor rating websites?

Molly

 
At October 1, 2012 at 1:58 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

This lists some of them (scroll about 1/3 of the way down to see the bulleted "directory" and "rating" site links) -
http://patients.about.com/od/doctorinformationwebsites/tp/mdwebsiteratings.htm

Also, do a web search of the doctor's name or practice and you'll likely see some business listings where you can add a review (yellowpages, yahoo, citysearch, insiderpages, yelp, etc.). A number of doctor rating websites may also come up on a search by name.

 
At October 3, 2012 at 9:05 AM , Anonymous Chloe said...

A few years ago when I went to a GYN, I noticed the figure of one of the women that worked in his office looked funny. I knew nothing about a hysterectomy at that time but I remember noticing it. She was a lovely person and I learned later she received a hysterectomy from this doctor. It was not for many years later that I learned a hysterctomy alters a woman's figure. Looking back, that is probably what I saw.

I am sorry she was deceived as many women are. Fortunately, I educated myself and did not get a hysterectomy. I am now past menopause and am intact and healthy.

Chloe

 
At October 8, 2012 at 8:26 AM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

When the broad bands of ligaments, blood and nerve supply that attach to the uterus are severed support to the pelvic floor and the entire pelvic structure is compromised. This allows the pelvic bones to move and widen, causing women to be one or more sizes larger across the hips than they were prior to the surgery.

You can learn how hysterectomy affects the bladder, bowel, pelvis, hip, back and spine by watching the video at www.hersfoundation.org/anatomy.

 
At October 21, 2012 at 10:05 AM , Anonymous Mary said...

Is a pap smear necessary if you are a virgin

 
At October 21, 2012 at 10:06 AM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Being a virgin does not necessarily mean that you have not been exposed to herpes and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). Herpes and HPV can be transmitted orally, and HPV can be transmitted through underwear contamination.

I have not seen a study that confirms the number and rate of herpes and HPV that is not transmitted through intercourse.

Knowing this, it is your decision whether you feel that the likely small risk of having these diseases is worth having a Pap smear.

 
At November 5, 2012 at 9:59 AM , Anonymous Louise said...

Ladies,
If you live in Colorado Springs, I highly recommend that you stay away from Dr. Jack Tubbs... don't walk... run! He is hysterectomy-happy and not a truthful person.
Thank you.

Louise

 
At November 5, 2012 at 1:17 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Louise,
Thank you for this tip. Hopefully, it will help some women avoid hysterectomy. For even more exposure to the truth about this doctor, please do a web search for his name and go to those doctor rating and business listing websites where you can add your review.

 
At November 5, 2012 at 1:21 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Louise,
I forgot to mention - Please also post his name as well as the hospital's name (if you had a hysterectomy) along with your story on the "Name that Doctor and Hospital" blog here - http://hysterectomyinformation.blogspot.com/2009/01/name-that-doctor-and-hospital_07.html

 
At November 19, 2012 at 8:59 AM , Anonymous Janice said...

I am 57 now. I had a hysterectomy when I was 27. I have a lot of symptoms I didn't relate to hysterectomy one of which is terrible memory problems. I am also extremely angry and depressed even after all this time at the bubbling, insensitive jerk who operated on me. I believe a hysterectomy at that age really messes up your whole life. I feel very old. I feel totally violated and abused. I had a vaginal hysterectomy and I have chronic back pain from it. My job is very physical and I can't tell you how bad my body and health is failing. I have absolutely no sex drive and sex isn't anything in my life. My husband "uses" my body. What a miserable existence. I can't tell you what I'd like to do to the surgeon. He was supposed to have left my ovaries. Don't know what else or if he did. I haven't been to a doctor for women issues since I was 35. I can't stand to be touched. I believe I have post traumatic stress disorder from the experience. I can't even bear to enter a hospital, go to a doctor, have medical tests or anything without almost having a mental breakdown. Now I'm having problems that may require surgery on an old injury. Somehow I can't even deal with having ex rays. I don't see much for my future. I'm sick of life.

 
At December 9, 2012 at 8:05 PM , Anonymous Liz said...

I have not posted in quite awhile. Six long years ago I went to have an ovarian cyst removed. My 'doctor' took it upon himself to take EVERYTHING. My life ended that day. I cannot count the times I have wanted to end my life.

That being said, I just finished watching a movie I stumbled upon on netflix called, 'The Invisible War'. I have ALWAYS felt as if I were raped. This film justified my feelings. It is about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) affecting women in the military who are raped and treated as if it is their own fault. I cried throughout the entire film. I honestly believe we have PTSD because of the injustice done to us and the refusal of the medical AND legal community to recognize that this is even an issue.

 
At December 9, 2012 at 8:06 PM , Anonymous Liz said...

I should add, as well as the far reaching physical and mental problems we face every day.

 
At December 9, 2012 at 8:07 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

I'm sorry this was done to you! My story is similar. I was also hysterectomized and castrated 6 years ago for an ovarian cyst and feel like I was raped. The book "The Ultimate Rape" is about hysterectomy and castration. There's no doubt we have PTSD. It's bad enough being robbed of our sex organs but the betrayal by our doctors makes it that much more horrific.

It really is disgusting how no one seems to care much less try to change it.

 
At December 9, 2012 at 8:15 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Susan,

Perhaps you are unaware that HERS has dedicated all of our efforts for 30 years to stop what is being done to women.

HERS has counselled over a million women, provided information to millions more, held annual conferences, lectured at medical and nursing schools and numerous other venues, and produced the only educational materials that have empowered women to avoid hysterectomy.

Please visit HERS website at www.hersfoundation.org and click on each navigation tab at the top of the Home page, then post whether you think "...no one seems to care much less try to change it."

You can be part of the solution. Call HERS at 610.667.7757 and find out what you can do to stop this surgical abuse of women. We all have a choice to do something about it and be part of the solution, or to do nothing and be part of the problem. You make a difference in stopping this from being done to women. Have you called your local legislator to schedule an appointment to ask them to support legislative change? When you do, call HERS at 610.667.7757 and I will meet you at your legislators to help you make them understand that it is imperative that they introduce legislation that will compel doctors to provide women with the consequential information about the effects of hysterectomy.

Nora W Coffey, HERS Foundation

 
At December 16, 2012 at 2:47 PM , Anonymous Robin said...

I had a total hysterectomy and removal of both ovaries seven years ago. I have posted on HERS site before but it's been a while. Due to the trauma of surgical menopause for me at the age of 33 when I had it, the fact that I had no children, and how sick it made me, I developed anorexia nervosa. I lost my whole sense of self when I woke up from that surgery and I still have not found her. I still struggle with the anorexia today and have relapsed due to a pelvic/spine injury recently not allowing me to exercise. I had my surgery in 2005 and had a dxa scan in 2006 that revealed severe osteoporosis already. I knew I had risk factors before my hysterectomy (very thin, former smoker, genetics, on thyroid meds) but I had no idea how rapidly I would lose bone density after wards, even with hrt (estradiol and compounded testosterone) and taking calcium, vitamin D, magnesium, boron etc. It has continued to decline with each dxa scan. I have always been extremely active but now I can barely walk because I have a stress fracture in my pelvis, and my spine is now collapsing on itself. I have lost a half inch of height. I ended up with a stress fracture in my foot in September. My body is literally crumbling. I am forty years old. I wish my surgeon would have taken my bone density into consideration BEFORE my hysterectomy and would have run a dxa then. Had I known how bad it already was, I would have run from his office and never had the hysterectomy. I didn't want it to begin with but getting any other kind of help for endometriosis is next to impossible.
I hope anyone reading this who hasn't had one will consider what it does to your bones. I also now have diagnosed lordosis in my lower spine. I never had this before. Fun fun...

 
At December 16, 2012 at 5:42 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Robin, Thank you for posting about your experience. If before your surgery we had a law that compelled doctors to give HERS Female Anatomy video at least two weeks prior to being told to sign a hysterectomy consent form, you would have been fully informed. Have you watched the video? You can view it at www.hersfoundation.org/anatomy.

Please go to HERS home page www.hersfoundation.org and sign the petition. If you do not see it immediately when you get to the website, scroll down a little and you will see it.

You can also post on HERS Facebook, search for Hysterectomy Educational Resources and Services. You honesty and openness about what hysterectomy has done to your body, your health and your life is imperative for women to know. Unfortunately, it is extremely common, you have a typical Post-hysterectomy Syndrome. There is no cure, but HERS may be able to tell you what some women have found to give them some relief of symptoms.

 
At December 17, 2012 at 12:32 PM , Anonymous Debbie said...

Dr Sebastion Faro MD and Dr Constance Faro MD at Womens Hospital of Texas. Sebastion Faro was my gyny and Constance Faro ended up assisting him in surgery. I had to pay cash for her to help because insurance would not pay for 2 doctors. 09/28/2009 I had surgery. I was diagnosed with a uterine prolapse and had suffered from extreme pain and bleeding for years. They did a complete hysterectomy, rectocele, cystocele and put in a pelvic mesh sling. My life is upside now. Mesh is a nightmare with multiple issues. It protrudes about a 1/2 inch. Dr Faro did try to trim it twice but it didn't help. I bleed after walking, can feel it moving, it pokes me from inside from shifting I think. No sex because the net cuts my husband. Fatigue, no or low energy. So many more problems that I cannot begin to list them here. I have gained weight, am depressed, lost total interest in life. This is the exact opposite of how I was before surgery. I hope this helps at least one woman make a better decision than I did.

 
At December 19, 2012 at 10:23 AM , Anonymous Alice Marie said...

I just watched the video that shows an actual hysterectomy being performed. It is on the page that has the anatomy video.

It made me sick to watch it. It felt like the woman's body was just meat they were cutting into, disecting, tearing apart, putting needles into and taking pieces away. I wonder when this will be done away with. Do you think the new government managed care will minimize the number of hysterectomies or only make it easier to get approved? It is truly disrespectful of women's body. The medical industry has become a money-making racket. I try to stay away from doctors and only go when necessary. I have no plans of getting cut into for any reason.

Alice Marie

 
At December 19, 2012 at 3:21 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Alice Marie,

Was it HERS video, "Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs" that you saw on the same page as a video of a hysterectomy being performed?

HERS does not show any videos of the surgery, so we would appreciate knowing the URL for the page you found. Thank you!

 
At December 19, 2012 at 11:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I found it along with many other videos like the one where HERS is protesting. They were all on the female anatomy page of the hersfoundation.org website. There was a square with many videos to choose from. I also watched the HERS protest video.

Alice Marie

 
At December 20, 2012 at 12:04 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just looked again and they are still there as well as many other videos. They appear after you watch the female anatomy video.

Alice Marie.

 
At December 20, 2012 at 9:09 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

Alice Marie - I don't see any videos of a hysterectomy here on the HERS website. Do you mean Youtube?

 
At December 30, 2012 at 12:37 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The You Tube videos appear on the hersfoundation website after watching the hers anatomy video.

 
At December 30, 2012 at 5:49 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Some of the videos that appear on Youtube under "HERS Foundation" don't belong to HERS. They're videos that elicited a comment from HERS. One of those happens to be a video of a hysterectomy that is being used to market hysterectomy as a safe procedure without negative consequences. We know that NO hysterectomy is without adverse effects.

 
At December 30, 2012 at 8:31 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The you tube videos appear on the hers website after watching the hers anatomy video - it makes it appear they are from Hers becasue they appear on the hers website. Maybe someone can do something to keep them from coming to the hers website.

 
At December 31, 2012 at 9:56 AM , Anonymous Susan said...

At first glance, it does look odd but if you read the comment you can see that HERS is debunking the myth that the uterus is a ticking time bomb and therefore needs to be removed.

If you want to see only the HERS' videos, click on "Uploads" above and to the left of the list of videos. These are all the videos that have been uploaded to Youtube by user "HERSFoundation."

 
At January 7, 2013 at 10:39 AM , Anonymous Monica said...

I wish I had know of this before my hyst in 2002. I feel I didn't have enought information to make the right descion. I was sort of pressured my Dr and husband to do it as fast as possable. I was asured I wouldn't have any more problems after the surgery. I have read some of the other women's comment's it's good to not be alone in this. All though my problem aren't as bad as some of the other ladies. I still have on going problems. Such as it changed my cating habits and I don't know why.

 
At January 8, 2013 at 8:17 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Monica,
I'm sorry that you too were a victim of the fraud of hysterectomy. In order to help prevent other women from being victimized by your doctor, it would be helpful to post the doctor's and hospital's names and your story on this HERS blog - http://hysterectomyinformation.blogspot.com/2009/01/name-that-doctor-and-hospital_07.html. In order to post, scroll to the bottom and click on "post a comment."

 
At January 9, 2013 at 7:41 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am still dealing with the pain and anger from my hysterectomy 6 years ago. I too felt pressured and manipulated into having this unwarranted operation as a "cure" for heavy periods. I certainly wasn't provided with the information I needed to make a fully informed decision. Had I known about atlernative treatments and the likely adverse side effects, I would never have given my consent to have my uterus and one of my ovaries removed. When I tried to complain about the way I was treated by the surgeon who performed the operation, I was told that I didn't need a uterus and I should be glad I didn't have periods anymore! I wish I had known about HERS before I consented to have my female organs removed. My life has moved on over the last 6 years but the pain is still there.

 
At January 12, 2013 at 3:22 PM , Blogger Tracie Morell said...

I am no longer intact. Both my midwife and GYN told me that my best option to elevate the severe pain of my bi-weekly cycles, the ensure that the cervical dysplasia would not return, and the polyps would go away was to have a hysterectomy. I was given a little pamphlet about the operation, and my female GYN discussed the generic pros and cons. Since I had no health insurance at the time, I did nothing about it. Eventually, I was approved for Medical Assistance for only three months, so the doctors pushed me through the operation very quickly. They did not talked to me about the emotional, sexual, and physical impact this would have on me. I am only 34.

 
At January 14, 2013 at 10:35 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

Tracie,
I'm sorry this was done to you! I hope you take action by pursuing a medical malpractice suit or filing complaints with your state's medical board and your insurance "company" (medical assistance program). You can also write reviews about your doctor on doctor rating websites and business listing websites.

 
At February 20, 2013 at 9:18 AM , Anonymous Sandra said...

Unfortunately all of us who are writing here have a common problem of depression, anger and blame someone else. It is so sad that human beings have come to this stage. Please get past this stage as I have done and have a beautiful life looking after orphans in Africa once every 6 months for 6 weeks. Please go and look at what is there outside rather than augmenting each others anger and rotting with it. Your sorrow is nothing compared to many women who do not have anything to feed their children with and no clean drinking water. Don't die of self pity but spare some of your thoughts and effort for others.

 
At February 24, 2013 at 10:00 AM , Anonymous Dominga Sutton said...

Who would love to called whatever when you are not really suffering the thing. It will be a harassment when we do this to them. It is more painful when the doctors themselves call the patients those names to them.

 
At March 6, 2013 at 7:23 PM , Anonymous Susan said...

The ABIM Foundation initiated a campaign called "Choosing Wisely" to help patients get care that's NECESSARY, DOESN'T CAUSE HARM, and IS SUPPORTED BY EVIDENCE. Each specialty developed a list of unnecessary tests and procedures.

Even though the top two unnecessary surgeries are c-section and hysterectomy, only C-section is on ACOG's list. ACOG itself has determined that 76% of hysterectomies do NOT meet their criteria and there's plenty of medical evidence showing the harm of hysterectomy. It's obvious that gynecologists' hands will have to be forced into stopping this practice of de-sexing women.

 
At March 15, 2013 at 1:37 AM , Anonymous Sage said...

I am about to end it all..... I am 27 and they have recommend a hysterectomy.... I am still a virgin. I just want to kill myself because I will be just a useless pack of skin. Nobody needs me anymore, my sister is the one my parents love.... she has 4 kids...

 
At March 15, 2013 at 1:38 AM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

What is the medical problem hysterectomy was recommended for?

Were alternatives and options discussed with you?

 
At March 15, 2013 at 6:14 AM , Anonymous Tired ("Sage") said...

I have gone through all form of birth control including IUD (that landed me in emergency 13 times within 1 year for extreme pain)they wanted to stop my period because not only because I am extreme pain pretty much everyday (which is ruining my life because I can't go out and I miss allot of work because of it) I would be bleeding 25 out of 30 days of the month and when "I got my period" I would be so heavy I usually soaked through overnight pads in 45 min, and in so much pain my legs would some times collapse under me. I have had my IUD removed for 4 months and now my periods are 2.5 weeks long very heavy and only a 2 week grace period in between. the extremely long bleeding was pretty much within the last 5 years but the extreme pain and heavy bleeding was since I was 15 years old. And now at 27 i have absolutely no sex drive and no interest in it I just want to end it all. I wanna give up. I figure I don't even have a boyfriend or a friend so what it is the point.

 
At May 14, 2013 at 9:03 AM , Anonymous Lisa said...

Nora,
Does this site offer information about robotic hysterectomies? It is gaining a lot of popularity. Can you post information on that?

Thank you.
Lisa.

 
At May 16, 2013 at 11:04 AM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

Lisa,

HERS blog has two posts about robotic hysterectomy. Go to the list of previous posts on to the right of the current post. Click on "Gynecologists Target Teenagers with Video Game Hysterectomy" and "Robotic Medical Arms Race".

It is important for people to know that whether the uterus is amputated and removed by a robot, or hands on by a surgeon, the loss of the functions of the uterus are equally damaging, if not worse with robotic hysterectomy. There have been hundreds of reports of various injuries to women caused by robotic hysterectomy, and twelve deaths have been reported in the US. Currently there are several lawsuits against Intuitive Surgical, the device manufacturer of the da Vinci robot for their aggressive promotion of robotic surgery. They are also accused of not training surgeons adequately before they start performing robotic surgery without supervision.

 
At June 1, 2013 at 2:38 PM , Anonymous Bobbigirl said...

I had a benign cyst. The 'doctor' insisted it was most likely cancer. My hospital admitting form says,'NO HYSTERECTOMY without the presents of cancer'. He took everything anyway. It has been 7 years. Not a morning comes that it is not the first thing on my mind. Nor does a day go by without it being the last thing I think about at night. I cry myself to sleep. Alone. MY husband divorced me.

My body is no longer mine. My feelings are gone. The things I once enjoyed? Now I sit and try to get the good feelings back but it does not happen.

I feel like a big empty shell. I am just plugging away. Trying to cope. I'm getting tired.

 
At June 29, 2013 at 5:31 PM , Anonymous Truth Seeker said...

Bobbigirl - I'm sorry you too were robbed of your organs! My story's pretty much the same (gutted for an ovarian cyst) except that the consent form didn't say NO HYSTERECTOMY. But obviously, that doesn't matter. I just don't understand how these misogynists get away with removing healthy organs and not giving informed consent.

If you don't mind, please copy your post and add it to the current blog (Keep your hands off my uterus). Women need to realize that the consent forms don't even give them full protection. Once they're under anesthesia, anything can (and too often does) happen.

 
At July 22, 2013 at 3:22 PM , Anonymous Lisette said...

I had my total/radical hysterectomy 10 months ago (at age 37). Since that time, I have lost about 1/2 of the thickness of my hair, gained 16 lbs, sleep maybe 3 hours a night and have hot flashes that make me feel like I have competed in the Olympics...frequently. Prior to having the surgery, I ran 5k's, played soccer and co-ed softball with my husband and enjoyed my time out with my girlfriends.

To say that having the hysterectomy changed me for the worse is AN UNDERSTATEMENT!!! I've never been so depressed in MY LIFE! Death sometimes feels like a welcome option!

 
At July 23, 2013 at 12:25 PM , Anonymous Truth Seeker said...

Lisette,
I'm sorry for all your losses! I know all too well how you feel. Since it was "radical" did you have cancer?

 
At September 9, 2013 at 9:14 AM , Anonymous Rose said...

I am 2 weeks post hysterectomy which left both my ovaries yet I am suffering from hot flashes, insomnia, loss of appetite, and crying spells. I have said it feels like they removed my soul not my uterus. Last night I wanted to kill myself. I find no joy or comfort in this life anymore. I don't know what to do. I just want to be me again.

 
At September 9, 2013 at 6:46 PM , Blogger HERS Foundation said...

I am so sorry, Rose. I will not offer you meaningless platitudes, all hysterectomized women deserve better.

Having said that, there is a process most women go through after hysterectomy. Some women start to go through the process immediately after surgery. They know they are profoundly changed as soon as they were awakening from anesthesia. It sounds like you are aware of the changes immediately.

Other women do not begin the post-hysterectomy process for a few months to a year. When it is delayed, there is usually a peculiar high right after surgery, a kind of speeding along, that can last a few months to about a year.

The process begins with discovery of how your body, your mind, your identity has changed. Then comes an overwhelming melancholia, not a true depression, it is more of an indescribable sadness at the realization of the profound loss of self. That stage is followed by grief and mourning. Next is anger. When women begin to experience anger at what was done to them, almost always without having been informed about the consequences of the surgery, I know they are going to cope with this. The anger may come out in tears, rage, pacing back and forth from one end of the room to another, or banging their head against the wall.

Do not expect a doctor to validate your experience as being from the surgery. You are not alone, there are millions of women like us. We will help you cope with what you are experiencing.

The best therapy is educating other women and men with the truth about the consequences of hysterectomy. Tell them to go to HERS website and watch HERS "Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs" video at www. hers foundation.org. Information is power.

 
At September 9, 2013 at 7:42 PM , Anonymous Rose said...

Thank you for listening. I called my OB-GYN ofc and they told me whatever I am experiencing is not normal and that because they left my ovaries in it is not surgery related. I explained I had half my thyroid taken out when I was 21 and did not need hormone replacement because the other half was functioning fine. I told them I believe it may not be functioning properly now that they took my uterus. I asked them to order lab tests for me but they said they won't until 6 weeks post surgery. If they test me then I can KNOW if it is hormones or just the process you speak of. They suggested I go to my primary care Dr because this is not surgery related. I have never suffered from depression. I have never felt alienated from my body or WHO I am or used to be. I chose a hysterectomy after suffering debilitating periods and long term anemia due to fibroids. They promised it would cure me...now I can only think "what have I done to myself" for had I had any idea of these after effects, I would have preferred to be a happy excessive bleeding anemic. I am grateful to have found this site. I thought I was losing my mind and it is good to know that I am not alone.

 
At September 9, 2013 at 7:51 PM , Anonymous Rose said...

I forgot to mention that this was my second OB-GYN because the first one freaked me out telling me I needed a hysterectomy and if I left my ovaries in the only thing they would cause in the future is CANCER!
They told me go to the Emergency Room if I feel like hurting myself...yeah right. I am not stupid.

 
At September 17, 2013 at 12:19 PM , Anonymous Truth Seeker said...

Rose,
I'm sorry that you too were not informed about the negative consequences of hysterectomy. It's typical for gynecologists and their staff to negate women's complaints. Acknowledging them would be self-incriminating if they did not tell you about these effects before you signed the consent form.

Please speak out about the consequences of hysterectomy. Education is the only thing (so far) that will save women from undergoing this grossly overused, damaging surgery.

 
At September 16, 2014 at 10:40 PM , Anonymous Carole said...

I have had a laparoscopic vaginal hysteretomy 2 months ago, uterus and cervix are out ovaries are intact. My sexual experience is a whole lot better now, have a better mindset. No bleeding issues.

 

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