Partial hysterectomy involves removal of uterus leaving the cervix, fallopian tubes and ovaries in place. Surgeons perform the procedure through large abdominal incision or three smaller incisions by use of laparoscopy. If laparoscopy is used in the operation, the surgeon will cut the woman’s uterus to thin strips so as to fit through small incisions. Like most other surgical procedures, there are some pros as well as cons of this procedure.
As compared to the other hysterectomy procedures, partial hysterectomy has shorter period of recovery. It recovery period is shorter when it is performed through the vagina. When it is performed by making incision through the abdomen, the duration of recovery may be considerably longer but not as the total or radial hysterectomy procedures which take six to eight weeks for full recovery. In some cases, this procedure can be performed on outpatient basis meaning that the patient will not be required to stay in the hospital. However, most of the doctors require that the patient should remain at the hospital so that her condition can be closely be monitored.
Partial hysterectomy poses some serious risks that make it unsafe. It should only be considered when other intervention measures have failed or have not yielded the desired results. First, if the procedure is performed by making incision through the abdomen, there is risk of permanent scarring at the point of incision. There is risk of infection of the post operation wound. For about six weeks after successful procedure, you will have to change your lifestyle because you will be required to have plenty of rest. You are advised not to lift anything or engage in strenuous work for the period of six weeks after the operation. Also for the six weeks after the procedure you should abstain from engaging in sex. Some cases of prolonged bleeding have also been reported after successful partial hysterectomy procedure.
There are some permanent changes that occur after successful hysterectomy procedure. These changes are permanent and cannot be reversed. These include the following:
- You will never have menstrual periods. This means that you will no longer have the capability of conceiving.
- You will not be capable of becoming pregnant. The removal of uterus makes it impossible for the development of fetus in your womb.
- For women who are before menopause age, the removal of the uterus during this procedure begin their menopause together with all the changes associated with that age such as decrease in sex drive, dryness of vagina, low libido, etc.
- Even when the ovaries are left intact, this procedure may cause experience of menopause at younger age.
- Because cervix is not removed during this procedure, you are still at the risk of cervical cancer. You will need to underage regular Pap tests for cervical cancer screening. Women who had abnormal pap tests results in the past are still at high risk of developing or contracting cervical cancer.
As you can see, the cons of partial hysterectomy are more than the pros. The procedures should only be performed when it is necessitated by conditions such as fibroids, cancer, etc.