Rehabilitation After Hysterectomy
A recent statistical study reported that in the USA alone, approximately 600,000 hysterectomies are performed annually. Hysterectomies are performed for various reasons such as cancer, endometriosis, excessive bleeding and tumors. The procedures can be carried out abdominally through an open incision, trans-vaginally, laparoscopically and more recently, robotically guided. The scope of the percentage of reproductive organ removal varies from removing just the uterus to complete hysterectomy where uterus, cervix, ovaries and even a portion of the vaginal canal are excised. Pelvic organs (uterus, ovaries, bladder and bowel) contact each other inside of the body by proximity and connective tissue attachments. This type of surgery can disrupt the natural function and stability of both internal organs as well as that of the pelvis and spine. Hysterectomy has been linked to incontinence, surrounding organ prolapse, back pain, abdominal weakness, to name a few. After having a hysterectomy, whether partial or complete, it is helpful to have guidance in learning how to restore function to abdominal and spinal muscles as well as strengthen pelvic floor muscles to provide internal stability to remaining organs. Learning proper body mechanics for mobility and exercise can be extremely helpful. Seeking guidance from a Physical Therapist who is an expert and specialized in Women’s Health, can help decrease pain and restore lost function and potentially further problems down the road.