162016Feb

Do I Really Need a Hysterectomy?

dreamstime_s_45153405It’s understandable for a patient to be taken aback when their provider recommends a hysterectomy. The procedure has a reputation of being a significant and invasive surgery that often requires a long period of recovery. Today, the modern hysterectomy can differ from patient to patient and not all are invasive. Some women are candidates for the da Vinci surgery, the top minimally invasive hysterectomy used in the United States.

Dr. Heidi Wittenberg also understands the name of the procedure has a lot of emotional overlay. The procedure is emotionally tied with motherhood and womanhood. Dr. Wittenberg will only recommend this procedure, which she prefers to term as “removing the offending organ”, if there are no other better options for improving your quality of life.

What are the reasons for a hysterectomy?

Can I avoid a hysterectomy?

Your provider will recommend whether a hysterectomy is appropriate based on your diagnosis and in consideration of your current quality of life and family planning goals. A hysterectomy is not recommended for any person who plans on building their family in the future unless it is deemed medically necessary, such as with a cancer diagnosis. However, if you have completed your family or do not wish to have children, then the procedure may be recommended in order to improve quality of life and remove symptoms such as heavy bleeding or pain.

What is a da Vinci hysterectomy?

While a standard hysterectomy requires a single large open incision, the da Vinci approach operates through a few small incisions, making it a less invasive procedure with less risk of complications and a shorter recovery period. We encourage patients to learn more about the da Vinci hysterectomy.

Am I a candidate for minimally invasive surgery?

Your provider will determine whether minimally invasive surgery is an option. We encourage patients to speak to their provider about the da Vinci hysterectomy, should the procedure be presented as an option. Please contact UGCSF with any questions or concern you may have.