When Should I Consider a Hysterectomy?

A hysterectomy may be your best option when medication and noninvasive treatments don’t solve your serious uterine condition. 

A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of your uterus and, potentially, your cervix, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. It’s major surgery that ranks as the second most common surgery among women in the U. S., with about 500,000 procedures performed each year.

Hysterectomy has physical and lifestyle consequences. The operation prevents you from having children and can cause menopause symptoms, vaginal dryness, and an increased risk for heart disease and bone loss. 

The medical professionals at North Texas Obstetrics and Gynecology know that choosing a hysterectomy is one of life’s most important decisions. Here are the top reasons you should consider a hysterectomy to treat your serious uterine conditions.

Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a painful condition where uterine tissue (endometrium) grows outside your uterus creating deposits in your ovaries, fallopian tubes, bowel, rectum, or bladder. Endometrial cells grow and bleed every month in alignment with your menstrual cycle. As these cells decompose, inflammation and irritation to nearby, nonuterine tissue can result. 

Endometriosis symptoms include intense cramps, longer and heavier periods, lower back pain, and leg pain that limits your ability to move or walk. Severe migraines, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, and allergy flare-ups might also occur.

Endometrial hyperplasia

Endometrial hyperplasia occurs when your body produces too much estrogen without producing enough progesterone. During monthly cycles, estrogen promotes cell growth, while progesterone regulates how often cells shed. When these hormones become unbalanced, too many cells accumulate, causing a thickening of your uterine lining.

Endometrial hyperplasia symptoms include longer and more frequent periods, which creates a cycle of almost constant bleeding. You may have bleeding between periods or missed periods.

Left untreated, atypical and complex forms of endometrial hyperplasia can lead to cancer. 

Uterine fibroids

Uterine fibroids are benign, muscular tumors in the wall or surface of your uterus. Symptoms can include painful periods, heavy bleeding between periods, pelvic pressure, difficulty voiding, or frequent urination. 

Fibroids can increase your risk of infertility or miscarriage. 

Uterine prolapse

Uterine prolapse occurs when your uterus slips down into your vagina because the muscles and ligaments on your pelvic floor become too stretched or weak. Symptoms include pelvic pressure that makes it difficult to sit or walk normally, as well as lower back pain, painful sex, and difficulty urinating.

When the uterus sags into the vagina but doesn’t protrude, devices or exercises can strengthen muscles to correct the condition. However, when your cervix or your entire uterus drops and protrudes outside your vagina in advanced uterine prolapse, a hysterectomy is necessary. 

Cancer

A hysterectomy can help you survive cancer of the uterus, cervix, fallopian tubes, or ovaries. Symptoms of these cancers can include:

Uterine pain, heavy bleeding, or any symptoms of serious uterine conditions require prompt attention. If you’re concerned about any uterine symptoms, call North Texas Obstetrics at 469-240-1866, or use our online scheduling tool.

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