A hysterectomy is surgery to remove a woman's uterus or womb. The uterus is the place where a baby grows when a woman is pregnant. After a hysterectomy, you no longer have menstrual periods and can't become pregnant. Sometimes the surgery also removes the ovaries and fallopian tubes. If you have both ovaries taken out, you will enter menopause.
Your health care provider might recommend a hysterectomy if you have
- Endometriosis that hasn't been cured by medicine or surgery
- Uterine prolapse - when the uterus drops into the vagina
- Cancer of the uterine, cervix, or ovaries
- Vaginal bleeding that persists despite treatment
- Chronic pelvic pain, as a last resort
Dept. of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health
- Ovarian Cancer: Still Possible After Hysterectomy? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- Pap Smear: Still Necessary After Hysterectomy? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Hysterectomy (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Use of postmenopausal hormone therapy and risk of Alzheimer's disease in...
- Article: Effect of modified laparoscopic hysterectomy on pelvic floor function: A retrospective...
- Article: Comparison of LigaSure™ tissue fusion system and a conventional bipolar device...
- Hysterectomy -- see more articles
- Female Reproductive System (National Cancer Institute)