A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of your uterus, and in some cases one or both ovaries and the fallopian tubes are also removed. Ranked as the most common surgical procedures among women, a hysterectomy is usually performed for those who have gynecological cancer, endometriosis, fibroids, uterine prolapse, constant vaginal bleeding or chronic pelvic pain. Hysterectomies remove the ability to become pregnant so if you think you still might want to conceive in the future, you should discuss any alternative treatments available with your doctor. In some cases, a hysterectomy is the only possible treatment solution.

A hysterectomy is performed under general anesthesia. The surgical procedure lasts from one to two hours, not including the prep time. Your stay in the hospital generally ranges zero (outpatient) to three days. Hysterectomies also require a recovery period that lasts several weeks. You should arrange for help at home if needed.

Most hysterectomies are done as "minimally invasive surgery," often with the aid of laparoscopy. This approach allows a more rapid recovery with less pain compared to the older fashioned open hysterectomy. "Robotic" procedures are offered through Oxford ObGyn. Please see the DaVinci Robotic Surgery link on our Related Links page.