Around 75 percent of women report debilitating fatigue following a hysterectomy that often lasts longer than the physical postoperative pain. This can cause issues in professional and personal life and may lead to frustration and depression.
Continue reading to learn more about extreme fatigue after hysterectomy and what can be done to get back to having increased energy levels today.
What Is a Hysterectomy?
A hysterectomy is a major reproductive operation during which a woman's uterus is removed, possibly in conjunction with the cervix, ovaries, fallopian tubes, upper part of the vagina, and other associated parts.
It is used to treat a variety of health conditions, including endometriosis, fibroids, dysmenorrhea, uterine prolapse, and pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), among others.
After a hysterectomy, a woman will need a recovery time of up to three days in the hospital and up to six weeks of reduced activity levels and relaxation.
Why Do I Have Extreme Physical Fatigue After a Hysterectomy?
While hysterectomy does not normally remove the ovaries, which are the main producers of estrogen and progesterone, women usually enter menopause within five years of the operation.
This means that they will start experiencing perimenopause symptoms that include fatigue, hot flashes, night sweats, low libido, mood swings, and more soon after surgery.
Overall, it is not uncommon for women to suffer from exhaustion after hysterectomy, especially in the first few weeks after surgery. As a matter of fact, it can take up to a year before women fully recover emotionally and physically.
I Also Feel Emotional Fatigue. Why is That?
A woman is likely to feel emotionally drained both from the experience of the operation and as her body struggles to adjust to the new norm of not having a womb.
It can be difficult for women to come to terms with the fact that they are no longer able to conceive, especially if they were still in their reproductive age and encouraged to pursue the operation for their best interests.
Moreover, some may feel that the point of sex has been removed and experience a psychological loss of libido. If problems persist, psychosexual counseling may help women improve their intimate relationships.
Dealing with Extreme Fatigue After Hysterectomy
Oral iron supplements are often prescribed to combat postoperative fatigue and the physiological effects of chronic fatigue after hysterectomy, such as inability to concentrate, physical weakness, and reduced energy levels.
Moreover, emotional fatigue can be resolved by speaking to a partner, counselor, or other women who have experienced a hysterectomy and the emotional repercussions of the operation.
Without a doubt, women should receive personalized advice from their doctors in order to deal with postoperative fatigue.
While fatigue can be debilitating and depressing, it's not permanent, and there are ways of combating it as well as the hormonal imbalance symptoms brought on by a hysterectomy. Learn more about natural and effective fatigue treatments by clicking on the previous link.
- DeCherney, A.H. et al. (2002). Postoperative fatigue negatively impacts the daily lives of patients recovering from hysterectomy. Obstetrics and gynecology, 99(1), 51-57. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11777510
- NHS. (2019). Hysterectomy. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/hysterectomy/
- Women's Health Concern. (2012). Hysterectomy. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://www.womens-health-concern.org/help-and-advice/factsheets/hysterectomy/