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Hysterectomy for Fibroids

Hysterectomy (the complete removal of the uterus) is the most common treatment for women with uterine fibroids.

This option is often chosen by women who:

  • Have fibroids that are very large in size
  • Aren't good candidates for myomectomy, MR-guided focused ultrasound therapy or uterine artery embolization
  • No longer wish to have children

Hysterectomy is the only procedure that guarantees fibroids will not come back, since the uterus is removed.

Hysterectomy may be done through traditional laparoscopic surgery or through either an abdominal or vaginal incision. Women with fibroids in hard-to-reach locations within the uterus may also benefit from laparoscopic surgery performed with the da Vinci® robot at UVA. This is an innovative tool that provides surgeons with enhanced dexterity.

Pros: The entire uterus and all of the fibroids are eliminated with no possibility of recurrence.

Cons: Women who have a hysterectomy can't conceive. Hysterectomy is a major surgery that uses anesthesia, so the risk of complication is greater than it is with some other treatment options. Women usually stay in the hospital 1-3 days after surgery, depending on the type of hysterectomy. If the ovaries are removed prior to menopause, side effects may include early menopausal symptoms, urinary disorders and earlier onset of osteoporosis.

Recovery Time:

  • Laparoscopic hysterectomy: 1-4 weeks of recovery time
  • Vaginal hysterectomy: 3-4 weeks of recovery time
  • Abdominal hysterectomy: 4-8 weeks of recovery time
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