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How do you cope with the side effects of hysterectomy?

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The most effective ways of coping with the emotional side effects of hysterectomy involve communicating with a partner or trusted individual and bolstering self esteem through knowledge and information, says The Hysterectomy Association. Physical side effects are alleviated by following the directions of the relevant physician, states the Cleveland Clinic.

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Feelings of depression or sense of loss in women following a hysterectomy are usually temporary, reports Cleveland Clinic. Some women find that the hysterectomy improves their health and sense of well-being. A patient should discuss any emotional concerns with a doctor before committing to the procedure.

A hysterectomy can involve the total removal of the uterus and cervix, ending menstruation and the ability to become pregnant. A hysterectomy may be used to treat abnormal vaginal bleeding, severe endometriosis, increased pelvic pain, uterine prolapse, or cervical or uterine cancer, according to Cleveland Clinic.

A woman may feel physical discomfort involving burning or itching at the incision for up to four weeks, which can be relieved by using lotions and creams around the incision site, according to Cleveland Clinic. Numbness, swelling and bruising are also common around the incision site. If the ovaries were removed with the uterus before menopause, a patient may experience menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. A doctor may provide hormone replacement therapy to relieve these symptoms.

A patient recovering from a hysterectomy may resume her schedule within four to six weeks, depending on how the surgery was performed. Vigorous activities like lifting and exercise should not be resumed until at least four weeks, claims Cleveland Clinic.

Complications following a hysterectomy include blood clots, severe infection, bleeding, bowel blockage and urinary tract injury, says Cleveland Clinic.

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