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)
- Pap Smear: Still Necessary After Hysterectomy? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
Videos and Tutorials
- Scarless Hysterectomy (BroadcastMed) - Baptist Hospital, Miami, FL, 10/17/2013
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Hysterectomy (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Levonorgestrel-Releasing Intrauterine System (52 mg) for Idiopathic Heavy Menstrual Bleeding:...
- Article: Postoperative outcomes and quality of life following hysterectomy by natural...
- Article: Risks from less invasive hysterectomy are quantified in study.
- Hysterectomy -- see more articles
- Female Reproductive System (National Cancer Institute)