What is a Laparoscopic Hysterectomy?

The uterus is removed by a laparoscopic hysterectomy, which is a less invasive surgical technique. A small incision is made on the belly button and a small camera is inserted. The surgeon observes the image from this camera on a television screen and performs the operative procedure. Two or three other tiny incisions are made in the lower abdomen. Specialized instruments are inserted and used for the extraction process. Some women do not have their ovaries removed when they have a hysterectomy. If the ovaries remain inside, the woman does not need to take hormones after surgery and does not have hot flashes. Some women have their ovaries removed because of a family history of ovarian cancer or because they have an abnormal growth in the ovaries.

Women may choose to keep the cervix in place (called a "laparoscopic supracervical hysterectomy") or to remove the entire uterus and cervix ("total laparoscopic hysterectomy"). The surgery is a little faster and safer when the cervix is kept in position. When the cervix is ​​in place, there is a 5% chance that a woman will have monthly spotting at the time of her menstrual periods. If a woman wants to be 100% sure that she will never menstruate again, she needs to have her entire uterus removed. If the patient has a history of precancerous changes to the cervix or the lining of the uterus, the entire uterus should be removed. If the operation is done for endometriosis or pelvic pain, many doctors believe that the chances of pain reduction are better if the cervix is ​​removed.

Why is a Hysterectomy Performed?

Healthcare providers perform hysterectomies to treat:

  • Abnormal or heavy vaginal bleeding that is not controlled by other treatment methods.
  • Severe pain with menstruation that is not controlled by other treatment methods.
  • Uterine leiomyomas or fibroids (non-cancerous tumors).
  • Increased pelvic pain related to the uterus but not controlled by other treatment.
  • Uterine prolapse (uterus that has "dropped" into the vaginal canal due to weakened supporting muscles) leads to urinary incontinence or difficulty in defecation.
  • Cervical or uterine cancer or abnormalities that may lead to cancer for cancer prevention.
  • Conditions with the lining of the uterus such as hyperplasia, recurrent uterine polyps, or adenomyosis.

Total Laparoscopic Hysterectomy

Total laparoscopic hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove the uterus. In this technique, the uterus is separated from the body and removed in small pieces through small incisions or the vagina. A hysterectomy is a serious surgical surgery with psychological and physical effects.
Total laparoscopic hysterectomy is performed to treat conditions such as painful or heavy menstrual periods, pelvic pain, fibroids, or it may be performed as part of cancer treatment. Hysterectomy can be performed vaginally, abdominally, or laparoscopically. Although there are advantages to laparoscopic hysterectomies, such as a faster recovery time and reduced postoperative discomfort, it is also linked with a greater risk of complications, notably urinary tract injuries.


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Precautions Before the Procedure

You can continue taking your usual medications unless your doctor tells you to. You may need a bowel preparation that will empty your bowel before surgery. To do this, you must follow a liquid diet (soups, jellies, juices, or similar drinks) for 24 hours before surgery. Avoid smoking and if you show signs of illness before surgery, contact our office immediately.

Recovery period

You will be in the recovery room when you wake up from the anesthesia. You may feel sleepy for the next few hours. You may feel pain in your shoulder it resolves in a day or two. You may feel some discomfort or tiredness for a few days after the procedure. Contact your doctor if pain and nausea do not go away or if they get worse. You should avoid heavy activities or exercise until you fully recover.
You may have a vaginal discharge for several days after the procedure. You can return to normal activity in three months, but full recovery may take longer. After the procedure, you will no longer have your period and will not be able to conceive.
You might have bladder and bowel problems, as well as an increased risk of urogenital prolapse.

Risks and complications

As with any surgical procedure, some associated risks and complications include:

  • Anesthesia problems
  • Injury to internal organs
  • Bleeding and infection

Specific risks and complications will be discussed before the procedure. If you suffer any of the following symptoms, you should get medical help right away:

  • Fever
  • Offensive vaginal discharge or heavy bleeding
  • Severe nausea or vomiting
  • Inability to empty the bladder or intestines
  • Severe pain

Side Effects

Menstruation will stop for women who have not achieved menopause, and conception will be impossible following a hysterectomy. After the ovaries are removed, estrogen levels will drop and can lead to early menopausal symptoms. Hysterectomy, like all surgical procedures, carries some risk. Our gynecologic surgeons take great precautions to keep risks as low as possible.
The short-term risks of hysterectomy are usually mild, minimal, and occur within the first 30 days after surgery. They may include:

  • Blood loss and risk of blood transfusion
  • Damage to surrounding areas, such as the bladder, urethra, blood vessels, and nerves
  • Blood clots in the legs or lungs
  • Infection
  • Side effects related to anesthesia
  • The need to switch to an abdominal hysterectomy from one of the other techniques

Hysterectomy carries a rare long-term risk of pelvic prolapse, which is the stretching or dropping of the pelvic organs into an abnormal position. Women with many previous abdominal surgeries or a history of pelvic prolapse or pelvic relaxation may be at increased risk of developing pelvic prolapse again.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is a laparoscopic hysterectomy considered major surgery?

A hysterectomy is a significant surgical surgery that involves the removal of the uterus, as well as the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and cervix.

How painful is a laparoscopic hysterectomy?

The first few days following your procedure, you may experience pain and discomfort in your lower abdomen. You may also feel some pain in your shoulder.

Do you bleed after laparoscopic hysterectomy?

Sometimes a laparoscopic hysterectomy does not require a hospital stay. As you heal, you will likely notice bloody vaginal discharge in the days or weeks after the procedure. This is completely normal.

What are the side effects of laparoscopic hysterectomy?

These risks include:

  • Major blood loss
  • Damage to surrounding tissues, including the bladder, urethra, blood vessels, and nerves
  • Blood clots
  • Infection
  • Side effects of anesthesia
  • Intestinal blockage