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Avatar universal

period after partial hysterectomy

I am 32 years old and had a partial hysterectomy 6 1/2 weeks ago.  This was after having problems with my period over the years, being married for 11 years and deciding we didn't want any more children, and the number one issue...a growth on my ovary that continued growing over 3 months. After pain for 6 months off and on and a trip to the emergency room, with pain so severe it made me double over, it was found on a CAT scan that I had a good size cyst that they thought burst.  When I went to my OBGYN and had a vaginal sonogram they found not a cyst that had burst but one that doubled in size from the 2 weeks prior trip to the emergency room.  My doctors suggestion was a laproscoptic surgery to remove the cyst and I asked about a hysterectomy and he agreed to do as I wished.  I had my utereus removed along with the cystic ovary and the fallapian tube on that side.  Upon my wish the doctor left the other ovary and tube and cervix.  I was informed by him later that because the cyst ended up being an endometrioma caused by endometriosis starting that I might later have the same trouble on the other ovary.  When my surgery was done it was 2 weeks til my next period.  I bleed very little and had just a little bit of pain afterward.  However I did have somewhat of a period.  When I went back for my 4 wk checkup the doctor asked me a lot of questions, one was if I had a period and I told him yes.  He then informed me that some women do have periods after a hysterectomy.  AFTER HAVING A 2ND PERIOD SINCE SURGERY I AM WONDERING IF THIS IS NORMAL OR NOT?????  Everyone says it isn't.
254 Responses
Avatar universal
No, it is not normal to have a period after having a hysterectomy.  However, some women refer to any kind of vaginal bleeding as a period.  A "period" actually refers to the cyclic build up of the endometrial lining of the uterine cavity, that is shed approx 2 weeks after an egg is released and not fertilized.  By definition, you don't have a uterus, no endometrium, and hence shouldn't be having menstruation.
But you could be having some sort of bleeding (again NOT a period) from your cervix.  "Normal" implies that it happens to most women after hysterectomy, and certainly the majority of women do NOT bleed cyclically after hysterectomy.  So it deserves to be checked out.
Avatar universal
yes, it is completely normal to have a period, if you still have your cervix. people who have their cervix removed during a hysterectomy will NOT have a period. i am suprised your dr did not inform you of this. i had a hysterectomy, with only 1 ovary remaining, and my dr told me i will still ovulate, i just wont have a period because my uterus AND cervix were removed.
Avatar universal
According to the New England Journal of Medicine:

"Complications of Subtotal Hysterectomy: Menstrual-like vaginal bleeding. After subtotal hysterectomy, about 7% of women have bothersome cyclic bleeding. This happens when uterus-like cells remain on the outside of the cervix after the uterus is removed."

(A subtotal hysterectomy is when the body of the uterus but not the cervix, is removed).

So it is NOT completely normal to have bleeding after a hysterectomy in which the cervix has been left.  Normal would imply that most women have this.  They do not.  There are procedures that can help.
Avatar universal
i was just going by what my dr told me and also information on hystersisters.com, i believe they call them "mini" peroids. again, i was just going by what I was told, no need to jump down my throat!!!
Avatar universal
Thanks to you both and any info given.  I have been told by a lot of women this hasn't happened to them, all having the same procedure.  I call what is happening a period because it is when I would be having mine.  What has been happening for the last several years is that I will spot lightly for about a week, then my breast will get sore for 2 days and I will bleed good for about 3 to 4 days, spot alittle then in two weeks start the process again. With both "periods or bleeding" it has happened the same minus the real good red bleeding. I have passed clots, light pink, and the dark that I have always done before. Also my breast have been sore before this.  I guess I was hoping all the bother of two weeks in a months time would be gone.  I had not heard of any one having problems.  I also read on the info sheet given from my doctor that a light pink or discharge could be expected for up to 6 weeks after surgery.
I am thinking when I read this very light, maybe I would need a  pantyliner.  What I have had has been just like a period, minus the real good red blood.  If I had the uterus taken out where is this coming from?  Why is it accumulating and passing when I would have my period....Maybe I am in a hurry and it will just take more time to stop all together...if not I am going to MAD!!!!  Could I still  get pregnant???  I asked my doctor this question and he told me not to worry about something like that....Well guess what, if I am still ovulating with my other ovary and there is blood coming form somewhere every month WHY NOT???  I have read a few on this website that has had a hysterectomy and still got pregnant.      Please if any one has had this happen also to them, give me some advise...HOPE... that I will not still have somewhat of a period every month for the rest of my life!!!
Avatar universal
Thanks for your comment.  I will just keep an eye on it.  That is what I keep finding in any info on hysterectomies.  What my doctor told me about some women still having a period every month has to be wrong and if I continue to have every month, I will look for me another doctor to get his/her opinion.  Thanks so much.
Avatar universal
Ladies, when your uterus is removed, you cannot bleed from a menstral cycle.  There is no such thing as a partial hysterectomy.  A hysterectomy is when your uterus is removed.  Whether your cervix remains, ovaries or fallopian tubes, no menstral cycle will occur.  Many woman have hysterectomies and were still menstrating leave their ovaries in to avoid menopause and hot flashes.    This makes having a hysterectomy easier especially since uterus' may be removed through your belly buttom or vaginally.  No long incision is required.

If you still have your ovaries and fallopian tube, but no uterus...you cannot get pregnant.  You will still ovulate, you might have sore breasts, achey side, white mucus.

If you are still bleeding it is from the surgery, stitches etc.  Speak to you doctor.

And again, once your uterus is removed, you cannot get a period.
Remember, your menstral cycle occurs when the lining of your uterus sheds.....nothing to do with your cervix, uterus, etc.

I specifically asked my doctor these questions and more just to become knowledgeable.

Good bye Tampons!  Good by Napkin!  Freedom finally!
Avatar universal
there is such thing as partial hysterectomy, do your homework
Avatar universal
I had a "supracervical" laparascopic hysterectomy in November.  Basically, a laparascopic "partial"  hysterectomy. I went back 6 weeks later for my check up with light bleeding.  After examining me, my doctor stated that I was a "Medical Phenomenon".  He said that a portion of the endometrial lining was left and that I was actually having a period.  I was devastated, to say the least, and now await another 6 weeks before he confirms this suspicion.  

I was forwarned of sore breasts and moodiness, because he left my cervix and ovaries.  However, nothing was mentioned of periods. And now... I have a staph infection and am taking antibiotics.

Gotta love being a "girl".  :)

God Bless!
Avatar universal
A hysterectomy is an operation to remove a woman's uterus (womb). The uterus is where a baby grows when a woman is pregnant. Sometimes the fallopian tubes, ovaries, and cervix are removed at the same time the uterus is removed. These organs are located in a woman's lower abdomen (see image below). The cervix is the lower end of the uterus. The ovaries are organs that produce eggs and hormones. The fallopian tubes carry eggs from the ovaries to the uterus.

Avatar universal
I had a LAP in August 2005 (kept my overies and cervix) that had to be converted to an open procedure.  I have experienced bleeding (like a period) monthly since the procedure.  At first, I was confused, because my situation was complicated with numerous surgical mistakes. I had a massive case of ascites for 5 weeks post op as the result of a severed ureter.  It has taken 4 months to repair the ureter and I still have some kidney damage.  My new GYN says that part of the uterus tissue was left behind, causing the bleeding.  I am experiencing major hot flashes (probably due to my overies shutting down during the trama of this 4 month ordeal).  I had to undergo a nephroscaphy tube and stents to repair my ureter. My Dr. has placed me on both estrogen as well as provetrium which he says should help with both the flashes and the bleeding.  Am interested in hearing from anyone else with similar situation.  What else can be done to stop this bleeding!
Avatar universal
You know what I have just had a third period since my surgery.  I too was never told of the chance that I could still have periods after having a partial hysterectomy.  If I knew that there was a chance I could still have them, why would I have had it done?  The whole idea was not to have a period ever again.  All my doctors office can say is that it is just taking time for my body to adjust and that I will eventually stop having anything at all.  This time was more like a period than the other two.  My husband didn't know I had started spotting and we had sex.  Afterward when he cleaned up he had very RED blood like before my surgery.  It wasn't the dark left over stuff that my last two consisted of.  He was shocked to say the least.  I can recall my doctor saying to me, after my surgery when I was still in the hospital, that I was well on my way to being period free, NOT... he didn't know what he was talking about.  If I am the only case he has had to experience this I my need to find me a new OBGYN because either he didn't do my surgery right or he isn't listening to his patients.  To the lady who had some of the lining left attached to your cervix, how did they find this out?  Maybe I need to mention it to my doctor when I go back in for my 6 month checkup.
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