Hysterectomy - Realistically, how long until I can go back to work?

Hi Everyone,

I have been reading posts here and am a bit worried. I have a Hysterectomy scheduled for this Thursday June 4th.(CC Stage 1B grade 3). I am taking a total of 12 days off of work. Is this long enough? I am an Office Manager for a very quiet office full of software developers. No heavy lifting and my job is very, very stress free. I figured I could just as easily sit here as I can at home :-) Any thoughts?

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What type of hysterectomy are you having? I had an abdominal incision that is 7 inches long and I wouldn't have been able to return to work for at least 6 weeks.

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Sorry about that, an abdominal hysterectomy. I asked for Laproscopic which my doctor does but he recommended the abdominal. Yikes, 6 weeks huh... I really don't know how I can swing that.

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Both my mom and my aunt had abdominal ones and both had to be off work for 6 weeks. There is a risk of bleeding with the surgery Hun so you have to take it easy for awhile.

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You might want to talk with your HR person at work. Find out, if you can use FMLA.. Family medical leave act. The doctors will usually tell you to take it pretty easy for 6 to 8 weeks. I am 4 months post op now and still am not completely back to normal. I tire very quickly. Best of luck to you. Please keep us informed...

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i agree with all the other women who have posted. i would think you'll need lots more than 12 days. you'll need to plan time in the hospital, probably 3 nights and that's with no complications. and then at least 4 weeks home, ideally 6. what has your doctor recommended? follow his/her guidelines as best as you can. you really need time to heal and recover, and for the first two weeks, you'll be in lots of pain, and you can't drive if you're taking pain meds (and your thinking gets fuzzy with those meds).

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Hi everyone, Thank you so much for the replies. You guys are a big help!!

My problem is i panic when I'm around my surgeon and forget to ask all kinds of things. I've called his office to talk to his PA but she hasn't returned any calls. In his defense, he's a very good (and thus very busy) surgeon. I just hope someone is available after my surgery to talk to me if anything weird crops up.

Anyway I spoke to my boss and offered to go on disability since 4-6 weeks is significantly longer than I'd planned but she insisted on paying my salary while I'm out (so thankful for that). Thankfully it worked out.

Thank you again :-)

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Hi Superdolly,

There's a website, HysterSisters, that's very helpful with lots of info and FAQ for women undergoing or considering a hysterectomy. What to expect week by week as far as healing/level activity to be expected, suggestions for sluggish bowel post-op, even products to help ease post-op discomforts are available on this site.

I had a TAH (total abdominal hysterectomy) and even though I think I heal quickly and take good care of myself post-op, it was a good 6 weeks before I felt somewhat normal. It is CRITICAL to avoid heavy lifting, vacuuming, laundry, gardening, etc during this time (even afterwards you may consider modifying heavy lifting) since the pelvic support system is a bit compromised and there are internal sutures you can't see - so, it's really important to take this initial time to heal - can't stress that enough. Now's the time to call in favors from family & friends to do things for you.

Keeping you in my prayers that all goes smoothly for you and that you heal quickly.

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Hi there -
I too had a total radical abdominal hys for stage 1B grade 3 - BUT - it was 10 years ago. I did not have any blood given to me so I was REALLY run down. I was just on the cusp of needing a few cc's of blood but they opted not to give me any so they told me straight away to expect that it would take me longer to recover.

I had a catheter bag for 10 days alone. My onco is a very conservative man and says that the bladder tends to get lazy if it's touched or irritated in any way and said that keeping the cath for a little longer helped with any potential leakage issues down the road. Thankfully 10 years later I don't have any serious issues from the cath or from the surgery.

I will tell you this, it took me every minute of 5 1/2 weeks to get my strength back before I could go back to work just for 5 hours out of the day. Your body cannot heal on a schedule and if you get it wrong from the start, you will have issues later on. You have to listen to the doctors and don't be a martyr. You will be the one paying for it later. Listen to the women here, they are giving you excellent advice and know what they are talking about. More importantly, it will probably take you upwards of a year before you start to feel like "yourself" again. So don't rush the emotional healing part of it either. Thankfully you've got the NCCC and the fantastic women & men on this board to help you with anything you might need. I wasn't aware of the NCCC when I went through everything but I did lean on some of the ladies on the hyster-sisters website for quite a while.

We are here for you -good luck to you and muchas hugs!

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had a total abdominal hysterectomy on oct. 29th. i want to go back to work tomorrow as i am bored out of my mind. i sit behind a computer all day and there is no lifting required. i do have a long commute to work and that can be tiresome. on short-term disability but i really just want to go back to work and make my full salary. short-term dis. pays 70% of your salary.

does anyone think this is a bad idea?

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I agree with the ladies who said 6 weeks is about the right amount of time to take off of work. My doctor wouldn't let me drive a car for 2 weeks. I'm surprised your doctor didn't say anything about that to you. I remember how it bothered me to even ride in a car since I didn't get my staples out for a week and it was painful. You'll find you'll be in pain when you cough, sneeze or even laugh. My doctor also warned me not to use a vacuum cleaner. When I tried to push myself and do too much, my body certainly reminded me that I needed to take it easy! I took a leave of absense from my job and went back to work after 6 weeks, but honestly, I could have used an extra week or two.

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resting is a way for your body to heal, tabatha...even if you're bored. if you're feeling better, what about going back part time, half days? and, be sure to listen to your body....don't do more than your body says to do....lots of healing going on 'inside'.

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