Vaginal hysterectomy

What is Vaginal Hysterectomy?

Vaginal Hysterectomy is a procedure of removing the uterus through the vaginal way.

In this procedure, the Vagina is extracted from its position in the pelvic region after detaching it from the fallopian tubes, ovaries, upper vagina as well as blood vessels, and other connecting tissues that support the uterus on the pelvic floor.

Vaginal hysterectomy is a shorter process at hysterectomy and also enables faster healing and lesser hospital stay. 

The vaginal hysterectomy will be suggested by the doctor depending on the size and shape of the patient's uterus.

 It might not be a feasible option for every woman wanting to undergo a hysterectomy. The alternative treatment for hysterectomy is abdominal hysterectomy.

What are the conditions to recommand Vaginal Hysterectomy?

In certain cases, the patient might require the removal of the entire reproductive system. This procedure is known as Total Hysterectomy with Salpingo-oophorectomy. 

  • Very heavy periods

  • Painful periods

  • Overgrown or troublesome periods.

  • Prolapsed Uterus (the condition where the uterus sags from the cervix into the vagina).

How is Vaginal Hysterectomy procedures done?

  • Vaginal Hysterectomy

During the procedure, an incision is made inside the vagina and the uterus is detached from other reproductive organs as well as blood vessels and is extracted through the vaginal opening.

Morcellation is a procedure often carried out to cut the uterus into small pieces for better extraction. However, morcellation cannot be carried out in cases suspected of uterine cancer.

The cuts and incisions are restored with stitches.

  • Robotic Hysterectomy

Vaginal hysterectomy might also be assisted with robotic hysterectomy in case of complications like bleeding.

  • Laparoscopic Hysterectomy

Vaginal hysterectomy might also be assisted with a laparoscopic procedure. 

While the uterus is removed through the vaginal way only the laparoscope comes to aid with viewing the pelvic organs during the process.

Doctors recommend assisted Laparoscopic Hysterectomy or Robotic hysterectomy if the patient has scar tissue on the pelvic organs from earlier surgeries or endometriosis.

What are the risks of Vaginal Hysterectomy?

Although vaginal hysterectomy is generally safe, any and every surgery has risks. Some of the risks associated with a vaginal hysterectomy include:

  • Heavy bleeding

  • Blood clots in the legs or lungs

  • Infection

  • Damage to surrounding organs

  • Adverse reaction to the anesthetic

In case of severe endometriosis or scar tissue, the doctor might switch from vaginal hysterectomy to laparoscopic or abdominal hysterectomy during the surgery.

What is the post surgery care to be taken?

Post-surgery the patient will be shifted to the recovery room and monitored for a couple of hours before shifting the patient to the hospital room.

The patient will be encouraged to move around the next day with some help. The hospital stay recommended usually is overnight. 

There will be bleeding like normal periods which will continue for a few days to weeks post-hysterectomy.

Temporary bloating and constipation.

Recovery from vaginal hysterectomy is faster and less painful than after an abdominal hysterectomy. However, a total recovery might take three to four weeks.

  • The patient should not engage in any weight lifting post the surgery for a couple of weeks.

  • Sexual activity should not be practiced for at least six weeks after the surgery.

They might be some pain after the surgery. The patient should contact the doctor in case of post-surgery problems like-

  • Excessive pain in the pelvic region

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Excessive bleeding as compared to regular menstrual bleeding.

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