Post Hysterectomy Skeletal and Anatomical Changes

Apr 23, 2013 by

Post Hysterectomy Skeletal and Anatomical Changes

I wonder if so many women would “choose” hysterectomy if they knew how it would affect their figure and internal anatomy. I know I would have told my once respected gynecologist “no way” and left never to return if I’d known just a smidgen of what I now know. Here are some of the anatomical and skeletal changes that occur post hysterectomy.

Ligament and Skeletal Changes Post Hysterectomy

An intact woman’s figure has space between the rib cage and the hip bones commonly known as the waist. The waist gives her the curve in her lower back, the natural sway in her hips, her “elongated” torso that’s proportionate to her extremities. This all changes after hysterectomy.

Four sets of ligaments hold the uterus in place. These ligaments are the “scaffolding” or support structures for the core (midsection). When the ligaments are severed to remove the uterus, the spine compresses causing the rib cage to gradually fall toward the hip bones and the hip bones to widen. This causes a shortened, thickened midsection, protruding belly, and loss of the curve in the lower back, giving the appearance of a flat derriere. In some women, these changes cause those hated rolls of fat (weight gain or not). In others, it looks more like a pregnant belly. This can be particularly distressing for women whose hysterectomies denied them the chance to have (more) children.

As if an unattractive figure isn’t devastating enough, these skeletal changes lead to chronic back, hip, and rib cage pain as well as tingling and loss of sensation in legs and feet. It also explains why, even absent osteoporosis, hysterectomized women lose height. With all these changes to the skeletal structure, I wonder if hysterectomy can also cause spinal stenosis. It would certainly seem plausible.

Evidence of my spine compressing started 12 to 18 months post-op. A crease started forming about two inches above my navel. It gradually lengthened over the next 6 months to a year until it became visible all across my midsection. I’ve always been thin (underweight) with flat, toned abs and prominent hip bones. And contrary to what most women experience after hysterectomy, I lost weight. As my spine compressed, my flat abs became “fat” and flabby. My hip bones became less prominent in the front (as my belly pooched out) and more prominent in the back since my rib cage had fallen onto my hip bones. And I now have intermittent back, hip, and rib cage pain as well as tingling in feet. My sacrum / tailbone has also looked bruised since not long after my hysterectomy.

Internal Organs Post Hysterectomy

And how does the body change on the inside? Well for one, it affects the bladder and bowel. The uterus separates the bladder and bowel and holds them in their rightful positions. Removal of the uterus causes these organs to fall impeding function. When the bladder or bowel is full, there can be a feeling of discomfort or even outright pain (exactly what I’m feeling at this moment – constant pain that increases by just walking). Complete emptying can be problematic as can incontinence. Bowels may alternate between constipation and diarrhea. Adhesions can further hamper bowel function even to the point of a life threatening obstruction. I’ve had serious bowel problems ever since my surgery 7 years ago. Chances of bladder, bowel, and vaginal prolapse and fistula also increase leading to more loss of quality of life and future risky surgeries. Hysterectomy has even been shown to increase risk of renal cell (kidney) cancer likely caused by damage to ureters. I have to wonder if functions of other organs may also be affected as our organs don’t work in isolation and may be further affected by the anatomical changes.

Nerves and Sex Post Hysterectomy

And what about sensation after all those nerves and blood vessels are severed? What’s it like having a shortened vagina that’s not connected to anything? Well, it’s no wonder sex isn’t the same! How can it be? And if you enjoyed uterine orgasms, those are obviously a pleasure of the past. Even nipple sensation can be lost because nerve endings are found all along the spine. The severing of nerves as well as scar tissue formation can cause a problem worse than loss of sensation – nerve entrapment which can be quite painful.

I’m not sure which is worse – the hormonal adverse effects or the anatomical and skeletal adverse effects. There’s no doubt though that my body has been drastically altered since the unwarranted removal of my vital female organs.

The adverse effects to a woman’s figure, as well as the many other adverse effects of female organ removal, are detailed in the video “Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs.” Priceless!

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Lucine Health Sciences, Hormones Matter or their staff.


  1. Annele Oosthuizen

    I am so glad I found your post, I thought I was searching in vain for answers, after my hysterectomy I experienced numerous changes, weight gain, ageing more rapidly, facial features and skin texture changed, my figure changed. I experienced emotional episodes, irrational behaviour. Had my surgery in 2010, compared to photos of me and my energy levels, sex live, I have aged about 10 years in a 5 year period. My mother also went for her hysterectomy during 2012, she experience similar side effects. Are there any remedy for this rapid ageing, frizzy hair and weight gain?

    • WS

      Annele – I am sorry you as well as your mom are suffering the common after effects of hysterectomy! Were your ovaries removed or have they failed (which is fairly common after hysterectomy)? That can certainly amplify the after effects. And if this is the case, hormone “replacement” (although not a true replacement for our organs) may help stabilize the situation. It is a disgrace that so many women lose their organs unnecessarily and are left with worse health problems and a lesser quality of life than what led them to having the surgery in the first place. So few of these surgeries are truly necessary (only about 2% are done for cancer).

  2. WS

    Cheryl – I am curious what prompted you to search for this article and how long it has been since your hysterectomy. These changes are gradual and do not happen immediately.

    It is unfortunate that your surgeon did not use conservative treatments allowing you to keep your uterus and its many non-reproductive functions. When chronic pain and dysfunctional bleeding are stopped, women obviously feel relief. But unfortunately, for many women, the relief is replaced by regret and despair as a whole new set of problems present themselves.

  3. Cheryl

    I’m not disfigured, prolapsed or any other bs this article claims. My sex life is amazing now. Best choice ever! Goodbye 28 tumours! See ya horrible periods! No more doubling up pads! And… Omg!!! I still have a waistline as well. Don’t believe everything you read on the internet. This article isn’t factual information. It’s only someone’s opinion.

  4. Cate Montana

    HI WS –

    I’m a freelance reporter investigating the connection between hysterectomy and back pain—a topic that has very little research behind it. Do you have any medical contacts who grasp the implications of this kind of surgery and chronic pain and back trouble who would be willing to be interviewed?

    I appreciate any leads and assistance!

    Best regards,


    • WS

      Hi Cate – I do not know of any medical professionals who grasp the implications of hysterectomy on back pain. However, I suspect that many do not grasp the connection or would not be willing to admit it. However, you would think all doctors should know since they all had to study anatomy. But especially, it would seem that orthopedists, neurosurgeons, chiropractors, and even physical therapists would see it in their practices quite frequently especially since about 40% of women have had a hysterectomy by age 60. The non-profit HERS Foundation – – may be able to direct you to someone. All the aftereffects of hysterectomy need to be exposed in mainstream media as women are not being given the facts and have to live with the lifelong damage. Thank you for your interest in this subject.

  5. WS

    I am sorry to hear of your diagnosis. You may fall into the 2% of hysterectomies that are warranted due to a cancer diagnosis. I do not know much about cervical cancer such as diagnostic accuracy (false positives / false negatives). Keep in mind that pathologists have different experience levels so sometimes a second pathology opinion is worthwhile. Best of luck to you in getting the right treatment!

    I personally was misled about my condition and discovered some inconsistencies and lies in my medical records after my hysterectomy. Getting copies of tests including biopsies and doctors’ notes can be extremely helpful. We as patients have to take charge to be sure we get the proper care.

    Best of luck to you!

  6. Jen

    I have been diagnosed with stage one cervical cancer, squamous carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. Both medical opinions I received recommended a hysterectomy. My ovaries will remain intact. I am a 31 yr old mother of 3. After reading your article and exploring HERS, I am extremely fearful to go through with the surgery in two weeks. I want to make the right choice.

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      I am not a physician, but I suspect this may be an instance where the hysterectomy is a valid option. Maintaining your ovaries is critical and it seems your doctors are willing to do that. If you choose this procedure, make sure the surgeons do not use a morcellator ( It is common with hysterectomy and it will spread cancer cells.
      Good luck with this decision.

  7. Britney Wain

    I am 28 recently had a hysterectomy had multiple complications but I still don’t regret it just wish I would have had a done by another dr and another way. I have suffered for years with cervical prolapse recurring cysts a fibroid I tried having implants removed my uterus and right ovary became enlarged. For me even with the complications I would still have it again just with a different dr and a different way. I was constantly bleeding you shouldn’t scare women or make them question their decision.

    • WS

      Britney – I am sorry your problems led to a hysterectomy. This article is only meant to inform women. My hope is that many more women find it prior to surgery versus after so that they can make an informed decision. Unfortunately, women are rarely informed about the lifelong functions of the uterus and ovaries. Although you did not share the details of your complications, I hope you are able to get the necessary treatments for relief and resolution.

  8. WS

    For those who are angry and distressed at reading this article – I understand as that was my same reaction when I discovered these anatomical facts. But it does not make sense to shoot / attack the messenger. You need to be angry with your surgeon for failing to inform you of these facts / adverse effects as well as question what other adverse effects were not communicated to you.

    Every woman deserves to know the adverse effects of hysterectomy with and without ovary removal before she signs a consent form. Silence and denial perpetuate the gross overuse of these damaging surgeries.

  9. WS

    ElleL – This is anatomical fact not BS. I know it is distressing to find it especially if you had a hysterectomy or are considering one.

    And it has NOTHING to do with vaccinations.

  10. WS

    ESmith – I understand your distress at finding this information. I did not understand it either…that is until it started happening.

    Withholding this information from women who have had hysterectomies is a disservice to women who are considering or are told they need a hysterectomy since only about 2% of hysterectomies are truly necessary. All women deserve to know the lifelong functions of the uterus and ovaries BEFORE they consent to surgery.

  11. ElleL

    This article is PURE BS. I also came across this website looking for something else. I would bet you are also against vaccinating children. …Propaganda

  12. WS

    Yvonne – I am SO happy that you found the information necessary to understand the damaging effects of hysterectomy and are cancelling your surgery. Please spread the word, the HERS Foundation’s video, as well as the articles on this site so other women can know the truth before it is too late. Thank you for sharing your story!


    I just watched the video and read most of the reports from women that have had a hysterectomy. I went to my gyno a few days ago and was in the process of setting up an appointment to get a hysterectomy. I have now changed my mind. My only complaint is that I just had a large fibroid removed in 12/14, and now another small one is forming. I have pain like my period is going to start but just a little cramping, not even enough to take pain med but I was thinking doing a total hysterectomy was the answer to future fibroid removal. I can’t afford to have bladder and bowel problems since I had a bowel resection in 10/12 and a small bowel obstruction in 3/15 possibly due to adhesions. These women have saved my life with their stories! I am calling my gyno back and am not having the surgery. My gyno didn’t really even try to talk me out of the surgery or tell me what can happen to my body afterwards. I am not willing to trade a little discomfort for a lifetime of pain. I’m newly remarried at 56 and wouldn’t dream of losing the desire to make love! Thank you ladies from the bottom of my heart for sharing your stories!
    Yvonne S.

  14. ESmith

    This article is misleading and does a disservice to those recovering from hysterectomy. There are far more muscles involved in maintaining skeletal support than the pelvis. I suspect many woman don’t have proper posture, let alone core muscle strength, prior to surgery, and of course being laid up only makes the problem worse. To suggest that the cutting of the ligaments that support the uterus is the sole cause of your back problems is folly. Many women recover from hysterectomy without these problems by doing proper core exercises and mainting proper posture. You paint a picture of the rib cage sliding down, as if that were possible. One’s spine would have to be severly misshapen to have what you describe occur. Performing abdominal exercises can be daunting after surgery, and some put more pressure on the pelvis than others. Anyone with these issues should seek a referral to a physiotherapist, not advice from websites like this. (BTW I ran across this article looking for exercises targeting my hips and came across this nonsense, so please don’t try to suggest something else as you did with another individual that disagreed with you).

  15. WS

    Someone Who Cares – Thank you for your kind words as well as backing me up on this issue. It is time that women fess up to the negative effects of hysterectomy. Until they do, many more women will be harmed by these surgeries that are seldom necessary.

  16. Someone Who Cares

    Dear WS – I’m sorry to see that you were so viciously attacked for telling the truth. Please don’t let it get you down.

  17. WS

    Sandy – You are obviously angry and upset but that does not justify name calling. No doubt, it is upsetting to discover negative effects of hysterectomy of which you were not informed by your medical professionals. Like you, I did not understand how hysterectomy could destroy the pelvis’ skeletal structure…that is until it started happening and then gradually worsened as time went on. And that is also when I realized why all the hysterectomized women I knew had boxy figures and big bellies. As detailed in the article, it is not the uterus itself that is responsible for the core’s skeletal structure. It is the four sets of ligaments that hold the uterus in place and are the core’s structural supports keeping the spine, hips, and rib cage where they belong.

    I wish I could say that my body, in your words, is “boxy BC you are not properly working your core and eating a clean diet period.” My diet and exercise routines have not changed in MANY years and I weigh less than I did pre-surgery despite weight gain being a common complaint after hysterectomy.

    Unfortunately, many of the problems caused by hysterectomy do not happen overnight. For many women, the relief from gynecologic problems is replaced by a whole new set of problems which are compounded if ovaries are removed or fail (40% chance of failure). Granted, some women’s gynecologic problems are severe enough that hysterectomy is a good trade-off.

    You said “These women complaining obviously complained over minor or maybe even normal female issues and conVince their doctors to give them a surgery they didn’t need and now they are complaining even more.“ Based on what I have learned in the last 9 years, gynecologists are typically the ones who convince their patients that they NEED the surgery, not the other way around. But regardless of who pushed for the surgery, women are not given all the facts about the lifelong functions of the uterus and ovaries before signing the surgical consent form. In my opinion, women deserve to know that hysterectomy can cause bladder and bowel problems including incontinence, loss of pelvic skeletal integrity and ensuing back and hip pain, sexual dysfunction, and 40% chance of ovarian failure which increases risk for a number of health issues. And ovary removal has a whole list of increased health risks.

    Yes, some women who have hysterectomies for endometriosis do get relief but some don’t. And for some the relief is only temporary. Hopefully, it will be permanent for you.

  18. sandy

    Also your uterus does not hold your spine in place or anything else if it did women would have spine displacement when they have a uterus that tilts. Not to mention your spine goes down to your tailbone. There is no gap in your back where your spine separates the two.
    Your CORE holds everything in place! Your uterus is normally very small, just above ur pelvis. So the whole idea of your uterus being needed to keep your ribs off your hips is nonsense.

    and for real a roll of fat is from excess visereal fat like too many carbs or processed foods aka bad diet/ estrogen dominance which can be caused be fibroids bc they produce extra estrogen. Which will cause a boxy look just FYI!
    also not to be mean but anyone who opts for a surgery they haven’t researched is a moron. That is why you have an appointment a week or so before your surgery so you can ask questions after reading up on it.
    I’m sorry but you guys really piss me off!

  19. sandy

    To all the people reading this agenda driven bs understand this website is giving skewed at best and at worst false information!
    The ligaments cut for a hysterectemy are reattached to your pelvic wall so yeah the whole spine compression due to ligaments bei g cut is an outright lie. And also it is very difficult to get a hysterectemy, took me 20yrs of severe pain bleeding and stomach swelling before I was finally able to get relief. Already a couple weeks out I feel a million times better, pain gone, pregnant belly look gone I finally have my abs back, and nausea and migraines from messed up uterus also gone. My skin looks better and I can finally Urinate like a normal person and am no looking going to the bathroom every ten minutes.
    These women complaining obviously complained over minor or maybe even normal female issues and conVince their doctors to give them a surgery they didn’t need and now they are complaining even more. That behavior harms those of us who need this medical treatment BC doctors are that much more reluctant to give patients treatment they NEED for real problems which a lot of women suffer unnecessarily with for years.
    Ur body is boxy BC you are not properly working your core and eating a clean diet period. Stop lying and blaming it on a surgery you had how many years ago? Seriously! What you are doing on this page is anti female! Women should be able to get treatment for serious female problems and this bs campaign serves nobody. Fibroids cause major hormone imbalances which in itself is hell not to mention the pain and long term internal damage an enlarged and sick uterus can cause as well as uterine cancer, excessive weight gain that can’t be lost with diet and exercise. The pregnant stomach from a messed up uterus is not pleasant either and cause major body issues as there is nothing that you can do to fix it. Birth control pills makes these problems worse over time as putting artificial hormones in your body is not healthy and is damaging to your entire system a d causes dangerous health risks. I could go on and on but the point is maybe some people don’t need a hysterectemy but there are those of us that not only desperately needed it but it was a godsend. and a hysterectemy may not cure endometrisos but it majorly helps and improves quality of life a lot. I know two other women who had a hysterectemy for the same reason i did both are very happy about the decision and Think as i do that it was crap that it took so freaking long to finally get it done. So thank you whiny jerks for being the reason women like me have to suffer for years before we can get the medical care we needed!

  20. Ann

    I don’t even know where to begin. I feel like my hysterectomy took my life away. I am over a year postop Everyday is a struggle with bladder pain, constipation and pelvic blood vessel pain. Surgery was recommended because of heavy periods, pelvic congestion and fibroids. When I woke up from my surgery I also had excruciating sciatic pain which has never gone away. My body was previously bikini worthy, now as others seem to have experienced, there is less support so my ribcage is lower and my abdomen has a bulge. My pelvic muscles also are almost frozen. I have a new large indent in my back now., almost like the plane across where the uterus was has an empty void and doesn’t support my spine. I wanted to get relief form my original symptoms. Instead i exchanged them for a far worse set and no one knows how to offer me pain relief. I have many friends who have had easy hysterectomies but you never know how it will turn out and if you are unlucky like me you will regret your choice every hour.

    • WS

      Ann, I am so sorry that you are also suffering from this awful surgery! The changes to our figures alone are awful but I cannot imagine being left with worse chronic pain. As far as the “large indent in my back now, almost like the plane across where the uterus was has an empty void and doesn’t support my spine” – I also have this indent (more like two indents on each side/back) which is a result of the rib cage sitting on the hip bones.

      I am 9 years post-op and am still appalled by all the stories / lies women are told to lure them into the operating room.

  21. WS

    Ah…thank you! I read and commented on your article shortly after you wrote it. What a great ending…”If you are considering hysterectomy and/or castration, you may have to decide whom to trust: the woman who cares enough to warn you or the one who says I am ridiculous.”

    I will be watching for more of your articles.

  22. Someone Who Cares

    Dear Sweet WS – Please don’t downplay the value of your article, by giving credit to someone else. I have admired the HERS Foundation for many, many years, and their video is packed with tons of factual information. However, your article presents this particular after effect in a wonderfully warm, personal, understandable manner. Please accept the credit you so richly deserve.

    As to your suggestion that I write more hysterectomy articles, my “Confessions Of A Castrated Woman” was published here on August 7, 2014, although (for some reason) I didn’t use my normal “Someone Who Cares” as the author. I need to be more consistent.

  23. WS

    Someone Who Cares – Thanks for the compliment. But the kudos should go to the HERS Foundation for its video “Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs” which is embedded at the end of the article and can also be found on HERS’ website as well as Youtube.

    As far as women who negate the after effects on hysterectomy forums, I question their honesty. People who are happy with the outcome don’t typically spend time on forums. They are out living life. And keep in mind that some women just do not want to admit the truth or are in denial. It is hard to admit and accept that one was scammed (regardless of the type of scam). Granted, there may be some women who get relief from chronic pain after hysterectomy but that would only account for a small percentage of women. And not all of those women would have made the same decision if they had known all the trade-offs.

    You really should write an article titled “The Hysterectomy Finally Did Me In.” Contact the owner of this website. She would probably love for you to write about anything hysterectomy.

  24. Someone Who Cares

    Congratulations on having written the most read article during 2014. The honor is well deserved. I have survived hysterectomy/castration for nearly 40 years, and thought I knew everything there was to know about the after effects – until I read your enlightening article. Thank you; thank you. I’m sure this article provided validation for many women who have experienced these after effects,, but have never read the “why” so fully explained. Again, thank you.

    After all these years, lately I have been jokingly considering writing an article entitled “The Hysterectomy Finally Did Me In.” One thing that never ceases to amaze me is why there are so many hysterectomy support group websites where, in posting after posting, the women make it sound like the after effects are no big deal or even non-existent. These websites make it appear that those of us who tell the ugly truth are nothing but neurotic kooks. How can this be happening so much? It makes no sense!

  25. WS

    Kathy – You did not say how long it has been since your hysterectomy. The changes to my figure did not happen overnight. They were gradual. Every woman I know who has had a hysterectomy has the boxy figure. It is more pronounced in some than others. And some clothes hide it better than others.

    What prompted you to read this article? Are you suffering some after effects of hysterectomy?

  26. Happy Kathy

    I don’t agree with most of this article at all. I had a hysterecomy and my body didn’t change in appeareance due to my surgery. This is bullcrap.

  27. WS

    ATH – I am sorry you are going through all this. I am surprised your doctor did an ablation for abnormal cells / hyperplasia. Ablation is not supposed to be done when there is hyperplasia since it can mask hyperplasia or cancer. Medication is the standard treatment for hyerplasia and typically cures it.

    Since you are having debilitating back pain, I wonder if it is from the surgical positioning. Another possibility is nerve damage which is next to impossible to diagnose. Have you considered physical therapy? That might help.

    As far as the diarrhea – Since you have taken so many antibiotics for the UTI’s (plus probably a prophylactic AB in the hospital), your good bacteria has likely been “wiped out.” A good probiotic or daily servings of yogurt with live cultures to restore your gut flora may help. I had severe diarrhea for probably 9 months or so post-hysterectomy and my bowels are still not normal (8 years out). I do not know the cause but suspect it was either a hospital acquired infection or the effects of the prophylactic antibiotics administered in the hospital.

    Hope you get answers and relief soon!

  28. WS

    A Smith – I am sorry you have had to deal with chronic pain. I feel for women with gynecologic problems that cause chronic pain because they oftentimes have no good options. No one wants to trade one set of problems for another. But like you said, sometimes there is no choice. I hope the hysterectomy gives you relief in the long-term.

    It really is disheartening to view this video after one has already undergone a hysterectomy. I had a lot of the same emotions about it 8 years ago after my surgery. Yet, at the same time, I was already experiencing many of the symptoms listed in the video. So it validated what I was experiencing. I came across it just as you did – while searching for answers to how I was feeling after hysterectomy. As time has gone on, some symptoms have improved with hormone “replacement” but some have worsened and new ones have manifested. I only wish I would have found it prior to my surgery as I would have declined my gynecologist’s urging for the surgery. (Ironically, HE used scare tactics to get me into the operating room.)

    Yes, depression is one physiological after effect of hysterectomy. Our hormones affect mood so removal of the ovaries or their compromised function after hysterectomy can cause serious mood disorders. The uterus itself may also have some link to mood. I quickly plummeted into a suicidal depression after my surgery. I also became extremely irritable and short-tempered. I may have gotten the help I needed sooner than later had my gynecologist (surgeon) not abandoned me after surgery. Instead I continued in this state for well over a year. Thankfully, estrogen pulled me out of the black hole. It is critical that women understand this link so they can get help. Some of the other symptoms mentioned in the video may be linked to depression. But many including the anatomical and skeletal after effects are not.

    Our sex organs are essential our whole lives and, unfortunately, women are not getting the necessary information to make an informed decision regarding their removal. It is particularly disturbing that doctors are withholding information from women and in many cases negating the facts and resorting to unethical tactics to sell this surgery. Even more alarming is the treatment of the female sex organs as disposable after childbearing is completed. Why else would healthy sex organs be removed for benign conditions? Why not remove the fibroids (myomectomy) or the cysts (cystectomy) and preserve the organs? And why remove healthy ovaries just because they are “in there” removing the uterus? Yet this happens in about 73% of hysterectomies. Did you know that 76% of hysterectomies do not meet ACOG criteria? One of the biggest ACOG criteria that is not followed is obtaining a definitive diagnosis prior to recommending a hysterectomy. The best treatment for overall health cannot possibly be determined until a diagnosis is made regardless of the health issue and specialty.

    It is imperative that women understand the after effects of female organ removal before signing a consent form. Only then will they be getting true / informed consent.

  29. A Smith

    I came here looking for information and wound up with a nasty scare tactic video. I am sure that all the information that was presented was factually true, but I also think that it was scripted in the most fear mongering way possible. I am 3 weeks post-op and just sort of curious about what sorts of things are happening in my body. I would have liked to have some of this information without the constant nagging that a hysterectomy was a bad idea. Well, let me tell you something. This was one of the best decisions I ever made. I know there will be changes, but I was in CONSTANT UNRELENTING PAIN since having my children’s 2.5 years ago. I won’t share my specific issues because it’s none of your business, but even with this scare tactic crap I would have made the same choice. I feel a million times better already.

    You should consider putting a label on this post as an anti-hysterectomy post that is aimed at people who are considering the surgery. That way people like me who have already had it don’t have to read through and watch a video who’s only intention is to make them feel badly about a choice that is already done. Is the information useful? Sure. And I’ll have lots to share with my doctor today as the information helps me to articulate some of the sensations I’m having. But this video makes me feel like I’m doomed to a life of agony and incontinence. Most of the reported symptoms of hysterectomy that the video claim are all symptoms of depression, which is totally possible after major surgery but shouldn’t be attributed to the surgery itself. You might be scaring women out of a procedure that may save their life or even drastically improve the quality of their lives. How about reframing the information in a way that’s actually useful and supportive? Instead of claiming that someone WILL have bladder problems, talk about what a bladder problem might look like. That way someone post-surgery can get some information to take back to their doctor about what their feeling.

    I really get that your purpose is to try and curb the unnecessary use of the procedure, but you are being cruel to the women who have already undergone this procedure and are simply looking for some information.

  30. ATH

    In 2012 I had an endometrial ablation because of low risk abnormal cells, heavy periods and pelvic pain. 2 years later the bleeding and pain had started again and the abnormal cells were back but were high risk this time. My obgyn of 10 years recommended a hysterectomy. On June 24, 2014 I underwent a vaginal hysterectomy. They took my uterus, tubes and cervix. I still have my ovaries. After surgery I began getting chronic UTI’s, experiencing severe lower back pain, diarrhea and weight loss. I have always been thin but I’m down to 109 lbs. I was at 115 before surgery. I went back to my obgyn (more than once) and was blown off and told pain was common and would go away on it’s own. So I went to my family doctor and she tried to treat the UTI’s. She told me the back pain was most likely from the UTI. I was on antibiotics on and off for 3 months when I decided to see an infectious disease specialist. He treated the UTI with a double strength antibiotic but I still have severe lower back pain. The pain is debilitating. I can hardly make it through a full shift at work and driving is something that I avoid because sitting in the same position for more than 5 min is almost impossible. I have had an Indium scan, a CT with barium and contrast, a stool test and several blood tests. All showed nothing. So now I’m looked at as a pain pill seeking hypochondriac that just wants attention. I am only 31 years old and have 2 kids ages 7 and 9 and have become depressed because I can’t keep up with them due to severe pain. Not to mention that my marriage is suffering. The thought of having sex makes me cringe because I know the kind of pain that will follow. WHY IS THIS HAPPENING??

  31. WS

    Yvonne, Sorry to hear you are feeling badly post-hysterectomy. Besides the possible causes Chandler mentioned, you could have some nerve damage or even a urinary tract infection. UTI’s are pretty common after hysterectomy and do not always show up on urine cultures. Hoping you get some answers soon and start feeling better.

  32. Yvonne

    I cam a crossed this site while once again researching all my post op problems from my recent hysterectomy . I have been to 3 doctors and going to my forth in about 30 mins. I am 7 wk post op was told I needed surgery for my adenomyosis. I am 38 and now feel worse than I ever have . Really bad lower back pain and pain in my pelvic area and pain when urination. Inter course is very unconfortable also. I wish I would have know before how I was going to feel. All the doctors just look at me like I am crazy and I can’t stop crying. I sleep on a heating pas when I can sleep. I am now worried about how I am going to return to work I work on my feet for 12 he shifts. I just want some help..

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      Have you considered that perhaps you have endometriosis? Hysterectomy will not help endometriosis and the endometrial lesions can grow anywhere, ligments, bladder, bowels, sciatic nerve. Read our articles on endometrisios and perhaps you’ll recognize the symptoms and find some help. Alternatively, it is possible, probably likely, that you have some scar tissues/adhesions that are causing problems. We have posts about that as well.

  33. Sharon

    Hi all, I recently had a total hysterectomy and lately I have been so sad. I can hardly get out of bed. I have no appetite, no energy, and I feel awful. Has anyone experienced this type of sadness? Somebody help me.

    • WS

      Sharon, I am sorry for your suffering. Mood changes are common after hysterectomy whether it be mood swings, general irritability, anxiety, or depression. I fell into a suicidal depression after my hysterectomy. Thankfully, estrogen has helped but I no longer have the basic joy and love of life that I previously took for granted. I urge you to seek professional help to address this “sadness.”

  34. Jennifer Cortes

    I am new to this site. I had my hysterectomy on 9/3/14. I read the consent form and I’m not blaming anyone. I have been trying to find out if my symptoms are normal or if its in my head like my primary doc and Gyn doc thinks. I had Laparoscopic hysterectomy with the leaving of ovaries and removal through my vagina. When I woke up after surgery my neck muscles ( rt side of neck only) was hurting was told that was because of breathing tube. Ok. A week later a week later my rt shoulde/ blade was killing me with lower back pain. I didn’t think it was from my surgery so went to my primary doc and he did some chiropractic like stuff with my shoulder and back. It helped a little. Now (2+ weeks) after my surgery my whole body is hurting. Is this normal?

    • WS

      Jennifer, I am sorry you are suffering these side effects. With laparoscopic surgery, the abdomen is pumped up with carbon dioxide to give the surgeon a better view of organs. This gas becomes trapped and irritates the diaphragmatic nerves causing shoulder and upper abdominal pain. It occurs in up to 80% of patients and can be severe. I would think this pain should abate over time but there are treatments that can be helpful. Here is an article comparing two treatments for this – Also, positioning at time of surgery can cause issues but that tends to be more in the hip area. I am surprised your surgeon or even your primary care doctor did not explain the gas retention as being the likely culprit.

  35. Lisa B

    I had a hysterectomy in April 2014. Since then, it seem the way my body handles alcohol has changed in recent months. Could these two occurrences be related?

    • WS

      Lisa, Sorry to hear about your hysterectomy. My body also handles alcohol differently since my hysterectomy. I have not written about it here on Hormones Matter but have mentioned it elsewhere on the web. I no longer get that tipsy feeling but could really use it since the hysterectomy has blunted my natural endorphins. And unlike before, alcohol does not make me horny…nothing does. I was never a big drinker but enjoyed a couple of drinks with friends on the weekend. Now it isn’t usually worth the nighttime “hot flashes” and disrupted sleep it causes.

  36. Sheila Stabler

    I had a vaginal hysterectomy on July 11/14 and in the recovery room my bllod pressure wouldn’t come back up so they did an ultrasound to discover I was bleeding internally and then had to cut me open like a c section. I then followed with 4 blood transfusions. I had them remove everything and am ok with that but I seem to have a couple problems. I am having a constant stomache ache all the time and I can not fart without staining and I cannot have a bowel movement without some sort of help by taking a sapository or duculax. I am going back to the doctors next week and I am making him run test to find out what is wrong or might of got screwed up in surgery!

    • WS

      Sheila – I am sorry you had surgical complications and are now suffering with constipation and stomach aches. The medications given with hysterectomy can cause constipation. So can the repositioning of the bowels. Hopefully, everything will settle down as your recovery progresses.

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      Magnesium supplements work well for constipation and since most women are deficient in magnesium, supplementing is usually helpful for a number of issues.

  37. clg

    WS. Thank you for the additional advice re repair and healing. I am so impatient and active but I have decided to take this time to rest, reflect, and heal. I’m not sure if it was you that recommended metamucil but I used it yesterday ( I also had fruit smoothie w oats and almond milk). Easy BM and bloating drastically reduced. Love that stuff -best fiber supplement. Cg

    • WS

      I may have recommended Metamucil – can’t recall. I have used the generic because my bowels have been screwed up since my hysterectomy. But instead of constipation of which most women complain, I have had loose bowels with some fat malabsorption. Maybe I should try the Metamucil again. I quit using it as it did not seem to be helping. I fear I now have some permanent damage.

  38. clg

    Hi everyone. I am. New to site. I just had total vaginal hysterectomy w/ ant and post vaginal wall repair due to prolapse pelvic last Monday. My major issue was prolapse coupled w/tilted fibroid covered uterus. I am still extremely bloated and just feel weird. I am 58 and post menopausal. I opted on the vaginal repair over the sling due to several factors. 1st, the complications that could occur after vaginal sling placement. 2nd, if done properly, vaginal repair could be as effective as sling. I did a lot of research prior to procedure and came to the conclusion this was the best option for me. Of course, it’s early and the verdict over My decision is still out. I am very proactive and involved in my own health. I know my body. This was a major decision. I will keep you informed of progress and will be brutally honest so others similar to me can share and compare. My recommendation -research the facts -thoroughly. Best health to all. Because we are all in this together it is vital to find ways to stay positive! Cg

    • WS

      Connie – I am sorry you had to make this decision. Please take it easy during the recovery period. Having had prolapse, you have a bit more healing that needs to take place. You do not want to risk tearing sutures or developing (more) adhesions.

  39. nikki

    I had a total hysterectomy and ureter repair two days later. This was 3 years ago. I had to have it done. Although I never had children, my uterus has grown so large because of fibroids that they said that if I had waited,my uterus could have ruptered.
    I have had pain in my sternum for months, my Primary car doctor could care less. I have pain in my ride side from time to time. I also experience problems urinating. I go ALL the time. I think I am finished, I wipe and when I stand up, I have leakage.
    This post was informative and has given me a lot to think about. I never gave much thought to the changes in my muscles and bones.

    • WS

      Nikki – I am sorry you are suffering these side effects of hysterectomy. Although bladder (and bowel) problems are common after hysterectomy, the damage to your ureter could be a contributing factor. I hope your kidney has not been permanently damaged. A few studies show that women who have had hysterectomies are at increased risk for renal cell (kidney) cancer. So please be vigilant of any problems. I also wrote an article about the pelvic floor effects of hysterectomy. You can see a list of all my articles here –

  40. gail

    Am on a continual quest to find out more about my problems after a total hysterectomy in 2007, and if others are having similar symptoms. It seems women are suffering horrible consequences of these surgeries that actually are unnecessary but performed because Doctors are incentivised to sell more procedures and support products like mesh and bladder slings, thanks to the American health insurance schemes like HMOs.
    My life changed the day I went to a women doctor who did not disclose everything when she recommended a total hysterectomy for me due to a bladder prolapse. I went to a women doctor because I thought I could trust her.
    She was the absolute worst. How stupid I feel now. And am in dire straits with my physical and mental being. My life with my husband has changed and even though he is so sympathetic and helpful we are like ships passing in the night.
    I do not understand how this ruination of women’s lives is so common, still.
    I think every women who is recommended for a hysterectomy should receive patient advocacy intervention before surgery. It should be the responsibility of every Doctor from GP to OBGYN to recommend this, or better still write a prescription for it, as Doctors seem ill equipped or unwilling to spend time to explain thoroughly the consequences of having your lower organs removed.
    Somebody do something!!!!!!!!!…please.

    • WS

      Gail – I am so sorry for all your losses caused by an unwarranted hysterectomy. I also lost the strong bond I had with my husband as well as my children. Talk about devastating! And of course that is only one consequence; there are countless others that destroyed the happy, vibrant, youthful person I was before I was needlessly hysterectomized and castrated…by a man I had trusted for 20 years. And ironically at a Catholic hospital (Mercy) that does not believe in birth control. I discovered the non-profit HERS Foundation not long after my hysterectomy and that is when it all became clear. Getting my medical records was another eye-opener.

      Yes, Somebody has to do Something! But like you said, there are many $$$ to be lost in the medical industry. And insurance companies’ primary clients are the doctors and hospitals not the insured who pay the premiums. Informed consent legislation seems like a reasonable solution but legislators seem to be more concerned about losing votes from doctors and others in the medical profession than preventing this despicable assault and battery that destroys so many women and families. And filing a complaint with the state’s medical board is usually futile. It seems like the states’ attorney generals should be treating these scammers like they treat scammers in other industries. But I guess they deem them “untouchable” since they have M.D. or D.O. behind their names.

      I spend countless hours on forums every day trying to educate women. Unfortunately, the sheer number of hysterectomies leads women to believe that it is a “benign” surgery. And unfortunately, some women just do not want to hear the negatives (facts or personal experiences) and accuse me of not being supportive. And then there are those who have had hysterectomies who hang out on forums telling women to listen and trust their doctors not women’s negative experiences. And many women who would like to speak out just don’t have the time and energy with all the negative effects of their surgeries. If we could all work together, maybe we can make a difference. Feel free to email me if you’d like. And again, I am so very sorry for your losses!

  41. Rebecca

    Help me please!
    Crying while I write. I always had painful heavy periods. Have a son. Was experiencing flooding became chronically anaemic, was told a ablation was the answer to my prayers. Worse thing ever had the worst pain ever after every month. Ended up in A&E on morphine to get me through the pain. Surgeon suspected I may have addeymoisis ( not sure on spelling) contractions so bad felt worse than labour. Was advised only option was a total hysterectomy had it on 6th Febuary 2014 recovery ok. Sex life non existent major loss of feeling, weak pelvic floor – leaking pee when exercise, sneeze, rarely laugh. Feel the lowest I have EVER felt in my life and gained 20lbs. Can’t sleep, wake up with headaches every day. Having major sweats, Loosing my hair and my mind! Am so moany and miserable have zero patience. HRT is not an option for me mum nan and aunt all died before 50 of breast cancer. Tried excersise, peppermint tea, no fizzy drinks, vitiams, water nothing is working I can’t cope anymore. Any advise would be welcomed and is seriously needed. Thank you Rebecca

    • WS

      Rebecca – I am so sorry you were victimized TWICE by harmful gynecologic procedures. Since the uterus, ovaries, and tubes work as a system, any procedure that disrupts their normal functioning can wreak havoc and cause permanent harm. You can read about the mechanism of chronic pelvic pain caused by ablation in one of my other articles. Here is a list of all my articles on HormonesMatter –

      I am sorry you are now suffering from the negative consequences of hysterectomy. I suspect you did not get informed consent for either the ablation or the hysterectomy. Most women don’t.

      Studies show that estrogen replacement (without a progestin) does not increase risk of breast cancer. So it would seem reasonable to get a doctor to prescribe estrogen if you decide you want to go that route. I personally do not think I would want to go on living without estrogen. I can’t say I am the person I was prior to being butchered but estrogen has improved many of my symptoms including suicidal depression.

      Thank you for sharing your story and please continue to speak out about the consequences of hysterectomy. If you don’t mind, please complete the Hysterectomy Survey here on HormonesMatter. You can find it by clicking on “Take a Health Survey” on the right sidebar.

  42. WS

    Shanda – I am sorry that you also became a victim of the hysterectomy industry. It’s been 8 years for me and I am still horrified by the tactics used by gynecologists to lure women into the operating room. And robotics marketing is the latest tool in their toolbox. The authorities (including the states’ medical boards) just look the other way.

  43. Shanda

    I, too had a hysterectomy..and just like some of the ladies I just read about their stories…I was told I would feel better…but unfortunately…I do not…the worse I have ever felt…I am so disappointed in some of these doctors who do not sincerely care enough to give the patient all information make the right decision…I have come to know that you really have to study on information yourself and not really trust everything the dr tell you…who you have trusted with your medical care and taking your money for years…so sad there are people in this profession and not have a conscious to really care and go to bed at night with their spouses and not think about other people…but one thing I do know…God know all and see all…they will have to answer to it all…

  44. WS

    Elissa – I am sorry that you are also suffering from the adverse effects of hysterectomy. There is a study that shows a 40% chance of ovarian failure post-hysterectomy. And with only one ovary, there is even more chance of ovarian failure. Have you tried some estrogen to see if that helps? Unfortunately, there is no FDA approved testosterone “replacement” for women even though post-menopausal ovaries of intact women produce 50% of their testosterone. I hope you can find something that helps you feel “normal” again.

  45. Elissa

    I too had a hysterectomy and was told how great I would feel, which I cannot complain about the bleeding and cramps but my bones hurt! My who
    E body hurts! I have more spider veins in my legs now than I remember my grandma having when she was 70. I had my surgery on nov. 1,2013 not even a year ago. I have had my hormones checked because he left one ovary and was told it is working. My heart also beats differently and I feel very tired a lot!! Any natural advice would be great! Hope and pray that all of us get better or feel better soon!

  46. WS

    Theresa – I am sorry you are also suffering. Did you have a robotic hysterectomy? The surgical positioning for the robotic method seems to cause more problems with the back, hips, and legs than other methods (at least in the short-term).

  47. Theresa

    I also had a hysterectomy in October 2013. My lower back, hips, and legs are constantly killing me after the surgery. My lower back has an inward indentation as if I have a lordosis back. I never had this before neither all these aches and pains. Im so glad I found this site because I really thought I was starting to loose my mind.
    I wish I never had a hysterectomy, although I have my ovaries. I thought it was for the best but it wasn’t. Like others my gynecologist never explained all the side symptoms to me. Had I known I would’ve just removed my fibroids ONLY.

  48. WS

    Ladies – I urge you to take action with two organizations that are trying to make a difference in patient harm. Please tell your story of harm and misinformed consent from any/all gynecologic procedures that resulted in adverse effects (tubal, ablation, hysterectomy, oophorectomy).

    You can do this on the Consumers Union Safe Patient Project website here – I told my story in two categories – “Doctor Accountability” and “Overtreatment” (the last two on the webpage).

    And you can also tell your story on ProPublica (Journalism in the Public Interest) here – There is also a ProPublica Patient Harm Facebook page.

    The HERS Foundation also has a Facebook page. And you can post the name of your surgeon and hospital on the HERS’ blog “Name that Doctor and Hospital” on their website.

  49. WS

    Renae – I’m sorry you are also suffering the effects of hysterectomy. I am glad you are starting a blog and Facebook group. I like your idea of enhancing sex education to include all the functions of the female organs, not just reproduction. Not long after my hysterectomy, I sent a copy of the HERS Foundation’s DVD “Female Anatomy: the Functions of the Female Organs” to the head of sex ed for my children’s school district. I followed up with a phone call asking if they would incorporate it into their sex ed curriculum. I cannot recall their exact response but they basically said “probably not.” I have not pursued it further.

    There are a lot of deceit tactics used to get women to consent to this surgery. And with all the medical literature showing the harm, I am still appalled that the “assembly line” continues. But the hysterectomy industry is very lucrative and now with all the expensive da Vinci robots, they will not go down without a fight.

  50. Hi, how can I share my story on your website? I had a partial hysterectomy at age 33, what a nightmare….I’m starting my own blog and Facebook page called “project hysterectomy” to bring awareness. I want women to be informed, my Dr never told me any of these consequences….I also want to work on getting the true functions of the ovaries into the sex education curriculum at schools, I was only taught that the ovaries create an egg, and I’m finding many women don’t understand their functions…I didn’t and my aunt who raised me is am obgyn!

  51. WS

    Elaine – I am sorry you were also duped into a hysterectomy, a grossly overused surgery. Only 2% are done for cancer and, per a study in 2000, 76% do not meet ACOG criteria.

    I was also duped (for possible cancer). My long-time gynecologist removed all my sex organs for a benign cyst. I was a lab rat for gynecology residents, unbeknownst to me until I was in pre-op and they had already started sedation. You can read my hysterectomy story here on Hormones Matter. Just click on my username “WS” behind the title of this article and you’ll see a list of all my articles, one being my story.

    This abuse of female organ removal will not stop unless we speak out. It is too lucrative for all involved. I was so angry at having been deceived and harmed that I took every avenue possible to make it known. These included pursuing legal action, filing a formal complaint with my state’s medical board, filing a complaint with my insurance company that should have never authorized the surgery (although they will not tell me what my doctor submitted to get authorization), and telling my story at Consumers Union under both “Doctor Accountability” and “Overtreatment” here – I also wrote to my state’s Attorney General. I probably should have also filed a complaint with the hospital (Mercy) but figured it would be a waste of time and may hurt me in getting future medical care.

    Did you know that the ovaries of intact women produce hormones into their 80’s especially androgens which can be converted to estrogen as needed? Taking some estrogen and/or testosterone can make a big difference in surgical menopause symptoms. I took both for a period of time but have mostly taken just estrogen and it has helped a lot. I am 8 years post-op.

    I hope you find something that helps you function and gives you back your life. And I hope you can find the wherewithal to fight this injustice.

  52. WS

    Rene – I am sorry that you are suffering the effects of hysterectomy. Breast pain doesn’t seem to be one of the typical symptoms but I suppose it could be caused by nerve damage, the same cause of post-hysterectomy sciatica. I lost sensation in my breasts due to the nerves that are severed to remove the uterus and cervix.

    Gallbladder problems also seem to be common post-hysterectomy. Hormonal changes can affect gallbladder function but there may also be an anatomical mechanism (displaced organs). Diarrhea post gallbladder removal seems more common than constipation. But constipation is a common complaint after hysterectomy. Have you tried a fiber supplement such as Metamucil (psyllium husk) or Citrucel (methylcellulose)? These can regulate the bowels whether you have constipation or diarrhea. I suffered with post-hysterectomy diarrhea for over a year. It was pretty severe for about 9 months. I am 8 years post-op and I still have loose bowels although not nearly as severe.

  53. Elaine Bailey

    July of 2013 I was an active mom of two young adults, I was washing walls and cabinets. The next day had a weird pain in my abdomen, called nurse 911 and was advised it could be a hernia to go to the ER. Long story short they found a uterine mass. I had fibroids in the past, removed via laparoscopy. Surgeon basically told me I had to have a hysterectomy, I had gone through menopause so I was not using it anyway….made sense, plus I as in shock … After the surgery I complained about my wrists being stiff, was told probably just a result of the positioning in surgery. I went home after a week in the hospital, and the hot flashes started. The first time I went through menopause, it was like walking toward an oven standing there for a bit then walking away. This time I get tossed into a blast furnace and left there for several minutes then shuts off and could repeat several times. Sleep what is that, I cat nap all night long. My past surgeries were a spinal fusion and 2 C-sections….had no issues after any of them. Now every morning is a chore, my knees, my ankles, my elbows, and recently now my lower back is sooooo stiff and sore. If I sit and try to stand I look like an 80 yr old woman. I ache constantly, I still get intense flashes and my energy level has gone from active (pre-surgery) to minimal…..I am so sleep deprived and so sore….I feel I was not thoroughly informed and this surgery was the biggest mistake!

    I cry and yearn for who I was a year ago.

  54. i had a hsteromoncy in 2004 an i have suffered with with swelling in my stomach ever since i look like im 9 months pregant , have trouble going to the bathroom had y gallbadder removed since then i stay in pain my stomach an lower back an now im having sharp pains in one of my breast , i need some advice please

  55. WS

    dahlia – Thank heavens you found this site! I hope you are taking a good, absorbable form of iron with vitamin C to treat the anemia. The fibroids should shrink shortly after menopause. And if they cause debilitating problems, you could find a surgeon who does a lot of fibroid removals (myomectomy or hysteroscopic resection of fibroids) that will allow you to keep your uterus and its many LIFELONG functions.

  56. WS

    Sherlyn – Sorry you also developed hyperthyroidism. Hysterectomy really taxes the endocrine system. I recall a woman saying that she went into a thyroid storm and almost died post-organ removal. My endocrine system went haywire too and my hair has been falling out for the entire 8 years. I am frustrated with trying various forms and doses of HRT and thyroid meds. I suspect my adrenals aren’t in the best of shape either.

    I am glad you told your rheumy doctor about this website. Unfortunately, too many doctors are not educated about the effects of hysterectomy. I think they purposely dodge that in medical school – too much money to be made doing these surgeries and making us “forever” patients.

    And as I stand and type here, I have shooting pains through my hip and tingling in my feet.

  57. Sherlyn

    No not one Dr. Put this together. I had the hysterectomy 2/23/2010. Hyperthyroidism 7/2011. I just left my Rhemutologist office and told her about this website. She requested the link. She is going to read and research to maybe help someone else. Thanks ladies.

  58. WS

    Sherlyn – I am sorry to hear this. I am curious if any medical practitioner has stated that your stenosis was caused or likely caused by the hysterectomy. As I stated in my article, it would certainly seem possible for this to occur but I have not seen any medical proof.

    I have back, rib cage, and hip pain that I never had before I was needlessly hysterectomized and castrated.

  59. Sherlyn

    I am a victim of getting Spinal Stenosis 12 months post Hysterectomy. I had to leave my good job 6/2013. I cannot sit long, walk long, stand long. I cannot clean my home, handwriting changed. Heavy legs, arms. Pin all over body.

  60. Thank God for this site
    I have severe anemia an MY Dr has said it’s due to my fibriods 2 the size of oranges and suggest hysterectomy I was considering it until I found this page. My heart goes out to all the women who did it an now have regrets but thank you for enlightening us.

  61. WS

    Lisa – I apologize for my delayed response; I just noticed your post. I am sorry that you too were victimized by the hysterectomy industry. Although there are many of us out there, it’s a very lonely, isolated feeling. If you still aren’t getting any symptom relief from the Premarin, it may be worth trying some other form of estrogen. There are lots of options so don’t give up.

    And based on your surgical results, you may have a legal case if you wish to pursue it.

    I hope better days are ahead for you. I know how you feel.

  62. Lisa

    My nightmare began 6 years ago. I Have spent that entire time trying to regulate Hypothyroidism. The minute I found the right Dr and levels normal, I started bleeding. This went on for several weeks, it was so bad, I had to have a D&C because my Uterus was the size of a football. Dr recommended Hysterctomy (keeping Ovaries) and posterier repair. I had 6 kids and after kids I had 5 years with a Mirena IUD. I had the Mirena removed for 1 year before I considered surgery. 8 months after Hysterectomy, I am miserable. My joints ache in my legs and arms. After sitting maybe an hour or less, I can barely move. When I walk any distance my lower body especially my legs feel really heavy. I’m constantly tired. I got pneumonia for the first time ever 2 months ago, and now sick again. I never used to fet sick. The Posterier repair is a nightmare. I am too small for my husband and along with the lack of sensation, its not fun at all.. Even after 6 vaginal births, I always enjoyed sex. Though it feels great to my husband, and he is sensitive about my feelings, I have now developed an anxiety about sex. Because of my physical appearance ( I worked out really hard after my kids) but between my weight and size of vagina, I avoid sex.The other issue is my extreme hot flashes. They are out of control too. I have bad mood swings. Now lets talk about my appearance, I have permanent bloating, (bigger depending on my level of activity) My hair started thinning in front and coming in grey at crown. I developed permanent dark bags under my eyes and I gained at least 20 pounds. I have a job that requires a lot of standing and I have contemplating quitting after 12 years. I am 48 years old. I’m angry at myself because I didn’t research this. I was never presented with any other options. I am depressed to think that this is my new quality of life. I feel I aged 20 years since the surgery. I switched Dr’s and was put on premarin pills and cream. Haven’t noticed a huge difference, but only been 2 weeks. . I’m really discouraged.

  63. WS

    Hi Julie. I’m sorry to hear about your pain. How recent was your surgery? The bursitis I developed in my hip not too long after surgery went away on its own. But the back and other hip pain started a few years post-op. The pain comes and goes. It’s mild so I have not sought any treatment for it.

    Is it possible you have sciatica? I’m not sure what type of medical professional would be best to see. I know all of the ones you mentioned can be helpful for various problems. And stretching exercises can be good too (e.g. yoga).

    Hope you get some relief!

  64. Julie

    HI, I wanted to know if you still have back, hip, and leg problems? I had all those stymptoms prior to my hysterectomy and I still have them after my surgery. It’s very frustrating and I don’t know what to do, see a chiropractor, acupuncturist, or do physical therapy. Let me know, Julie

  65. Nicole

    I have not been seen by a nephrologist. Do you think that there is a chance I could have our will develop kidney cancer?

  66. WS

    Rachel – I am sorry for your awful experience! I also had nausea almost immediately post-op and it lasted quite awhile. And with it came severe diarrhea which lasted about 9 months and never totally resolved. Like you, I vascillate between loose bowels and constipation (with occasional intense pelvic pain). I seriously wonder if my gallbladder was non-functional for a period of time. And I wonder if the bowel issues contributed (along with the hormonal changes) to me losing most of my hair within 4 months of surgery.

    Did any doctor indicate to you that the gallbladder is at risk of damage when doing a hysterectomy?

  67. Rachel

    I was looking up stuff and came across this page and wow… I had a total hysterectomy August 13 2007 a few weeks later I kept getting nauseous so went toDr and he did labs found nothing but sent me to another Dr and after several test it was discovered my gall bladder had shut down so Dec 13 2007 it was removed and the trouble began I since then had last ovary removed.due to fast growing cyst. Since then I suffer from IBD and I fluctuate between constipation and diarrhea. Sudden menopause has not been good to me and I hope you all find answers soon.

  68. WS

    I am sorry that you too did not get informed consent for hysterectomy and are suffering the effects of this damaging surgery. The kidney infections are concerning. A study (in PubMed) concluded that hysterectomy increases risk of kidney cancer, likely due to damage to the ureters. Have you by any chance seen a kidney specialist (nephrologist)?

  69. Nicole

    Hi there. I’m a 32 year old female who had a complete hysterectomy two years ago. After battling bad endometriosis and poly cystic ovary syndrome for ten years and several surgeries to remove them both I was left with no other choice as it kept coming back worse. Since my hysterectomy I’ve had some major health issues such as heart issues, bowel issues, complicated migraines causing TIA’s (mini strokes), leg numbness and back pain. I have also had some bad kidney infections. I wish I would have known about all of this prior to the surgery so I could have passed on having a compete hysterectomy especially since I have no children. My question now is what really happens with your bladder and kidneys after having this surgery. Do I need to be concerned about serious issues? Thank you

  70. WS

    I’m sorry that you too were subjected to the gross overuse and damage of hysterectomy. Feel free to contact me via email if you wish to talk. Others here may contact me also.

  71. angie hayes

    Hello all :)
    I came across this page and thought I would share also. Well I had my 3rd son at 18 and my 4th at 21. Had a lot of trouble after having my last son. So at 26 I had a total hysterectomy. Worst thing I could ever do!!! I have pain all the time cause nerves were left exsposed and my hips are tilting in and back pain all the time. All with other health problems I think maybe connected. But for those who are thinking of having one or thinking its great , its not!!! I would love to have the week of pain every month I was having for the rest of my life. Instead I now have some kind of pain every day and just getting worse. So really think of the rest your life don’t focus on the once a week pain.

  72. WS

    I’m sorry that hysterectomy has robbed you of so much! Constipation seems to be really common. And it’s hard to know if adhesions are the culprit since they can’t typically be seen on imaging tests. Have you tried using psyllium husk such as Metamucil? Another product that is supposed to be safe to use on a regular basis is Miralax.

    I’ve also had bowel problems since my hysterectomy in 2006. It started as severe diarrhea and lasted for 9 months or so. My bowels have never returned to normal but tend to be too loose with intermittent constipation. My gastro hasn’t been much help either and when I started seeing him the first words out of his mouth were “your surgery didn’t cause this.” Well I certainly didn’t have any of these problems prior and they all started almost immediately post-op!

  73. Sue

    I’m so glad I found this site. I had a hysterectomy in 2007 and my health has slowly declined ever since to the point that the last few yrs. have been debilitating. My first sympton was constipation, then came the tiredness, headaches got worse, I’ve lost weight and muscle loss too. I can’t go to the bathroom with out some sort of laxative and now they don’t even work at times. I have on and off pain under my right rib, have been to every doctor I can think of. My health just continues to decline. I was the most active person before this surgery, now I do nothing most days. I’m very concerned about my bowel issue and the relentless fatigue. Suffering for all theses yrs. is really getting to me latley and just don’t know what to do. I know you don’t offer medical advice, but can you guide me to who I should see? My gastro and pcp’s are useless. Please…I’m desperate

  74. WS

    AJ – I hope you can find a solution to your pelvic pain and bleeding without having to resort to hysterectomy and all its negative consequences. Have you tried some form of birth control? What about non-hormonal options to reduce bleeding and pain such as Lysteda (tranexamic acid) or Aleve or Motrin (OTC or Rx)?

  75. AJ

    I’ve had ablation .. two years ago and I’m still getting regular, painful periods. I’m scheduled for a hysterectomy next month, and I’m concerned. My doctor has told me none of the above information. I had no idea of the skeletal changes, I’m a healthy, fit 43 year old in great shape. I am a fitness model and my body is my income. I have serious concerns having read this site. What are other options? if any?

  76. WS

    Ashley, I’m sorry to hear this. It seems odd that your gallbladder would be “acting up” this soon after surgery. What are your symptoms? And has a doctor told you he/she suspects it is your gallbladder? There does seem to be a link between gallbladder disease and estrogen but if you’re taking estrogen (and just recently started it), I can’t imagine this would have occurred this quickly.

    Be aware that gallbladder removal surgery is oftentimes done unnecessarily. Also, it can cause permanent problems. Oftentimes, more conservative treatments can fix the problem. So please do your research.

    I developed diarrhea shortly post-op and still don’t have a diagnosis. But it doesn’t appear to be my gallbladder or my pancreas which the GI doctor seemed sure of (although I never agreed with him).

    Please post back with more info.

  77. ashley

    hi i had a hystrectomy aug 30th and now my galbladders acting up have to go see a surgeon tommorow for it and i was wondering have you heard of anyone else having this problem after?

  78. WS

    As far as ablation – The younger a woman is, the riskier it is. According to this study – – the risk of hysterectomy after ablation is fairly high in women who have an ablation before age 46. “Hysterectomy risk increased with each decreasing stratum of age and exceeded 40% in women aged 40 years or younger.”

    Any procedure that disrupts the normal functioning of the “reproductive” system can cause permanent problems. These include ablation, tubal ligation, hysterectomy. These problems have been coined post ablation syndrome, post tubal ligation syndrome, post hysterectomy syndrome.

    There are a number of hormonal and non-hormonal medications to treat heavy bleeding and those are supposed to be the first-line treatment. Here’s a list of those options –

    Health care marketing is no different from marketing of other goods and services. We need to do our homework. Unfortunately, we can’t depend on getting all the facts from our health care providers.

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      WS, great find on the study linking ablation to future hysterectomy. I friend and I were just talking about ablation the other day and wondering if there was any long term outcome research. Would you mind writing a quick news post on this topic. I think there is a real void in space. It is something we haven’t covered and should. If there is any more research on ablation, that would be great too.

  79. WS

    I’m so glad you declined a hysterectomy and continue to research its adverse effects. Hopefully, you’ll share your findings on your website. If it’s not against the policies of Hormonesmatter, feel free to link to my articles. We desperately need to educate other women in order to stop this gross overuse of hysterectomy (and oophorectomy – castration) and the permanent harm caused.

  80. I’d like to add that in the book “Menopause in Modern Perspective” by Prof Wulf H Utian and published in 1974 (!!) they knew back then that leaving the ovaries in tact made little difference to the incidence of ovarian cancer (previously it was thought there could be an increase in this cancer if they were left in tact during a hyster) and should therefore be left in. This happened nearly 40 years ago.

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      Thank you. I will add. Thanks for the reference. Speaking of historical knowledge ignored by modern medicine, Hans Selye, deemed the father of modern endocrinology b/c of his recognition of cortisol and the stress response, also wrote about the role of progesterone on multiple organ systems, esp the heart and lungs on males and females. He, unlike others that came after him, didn’t relegate progesterone just too the its reproductive role. He recognized that as one of the hormones at the top of the pathway its functions would expand well beyond the ovaries. That seems to be ignored by most and somewhere we got the mistaken nomenclature of ‘female’ and ‘male’ hormones and then the further narrowing of focus to simply their role in reproduction.

  81. You’ve answered so many questions! I was offered a hysterectomy but declined but I often spend time trying to understand what happens to the vacuum/other organs and could only come up with part of the answer. I’ve done some research to find alternatives (ablation seems to be a good option? what are your thoughts? Certainly for mennorhagia which appears to be the main reason a hyster is suggested in the first place- was for me).
    Can I use your blog on my website? Not only the one quoted above but also Robin Karr knows me.

    • Chandler Marrs, PhD

      We’re happy to have you cross-link our posts and blogs. I would prefer you not repost entire article verbatim, however. That is detrimental to SEO for both of our sites. The search engines don’t like duplicate content. What other blogs have done instead is to write a brief introduction of the topic and then include a link back under: to read more click here. That will typically draw traffic to both sites and becomes a win/win.

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