When I was scanned for a pregnancy was when the fibroids were first seen. At the time they were inconsequential and in any case I had to deal with the fact that all was not well with my pregnancy and it did not make it to full term. I did not think about the fibroids for a couple of years after when I started to experience extreme bloating, back pain, weak bladder, fatigue and sometimes abdominal pain.
I had two scans to check what was going on and each time was told that many fibroids were growing; one in particular was taking over the space of my womb. By the time I had the third scan I was told that actually the only way to get rid of the fibroids for good was to have a sub-total hysterectomy. At the time I had thought this quite an extreme way of getting rid of something that appeared to be pretty harmless, according to what many of the medical practitioners appeared to think about fibroids. So for some time I talked myself out of it, attempted to find natural ways of shrinking the fibroids and/or just putting up with them. Until one day I realised how much of an impact this was having on me both physically and mentally and decided to get on the waiting list for the operation.
I am now three months post-op and I have to say that although I am not entirely firing on all cylinders just yet I know that I already feel about 100 times better than I did prior to this operation. The surgeon, who removed my womb, with its colony of fibroids, including one the size of a football, managed to do so with an impressively small horizontal abdominal decision contrary to a previous consultation with a different surgeon who said that due to the size of the largest fibroid he would have to perform a vertical cut that would likely go over my belly button. I feel like I have an entirely new bladder which in itself seems like a miracle because prior to the operation I would sometimes only have to walk for five minutes before I was peeing again! So I did spend a lot of money of panty liners that got bigger and thicker as time went on.
I think that there is a lot of bad press about hysterectomies probably due to a number of unnecessary operations performed prior to knowledge about other treatments that might work for certain types of conditions. However, I would advise anyone with large fibroids, and/or fibroids that are causing a great deal of distress to really consider this op (if you are not planning children), as it is extremely effective and worth the rehabilitation time needed to be fit again.
Now available on our online store and all other online book store’s. In My Own Words: Women’s Experience of Hysterectomy is full of many other real-life stories from women the world over.
Other people’s stories help women feel less isolated. They show that they aren’t going mad, missing the point or stupid.