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Does Having A Hysterectomy Make You Go Into Menopause

Sleep Problems May Be Worse When Menopause Is Hastened By Surgery

How to tell if youve started the menopause if youve had a hysterectomy or ablation

By Lisa Rapaport, Reuters Health

5 Min Read

– – Women who have surgery to remove their ovaries go through menopause abruptly, and a new study suggests this comes with an increased risk for the kinds of sleep troubles many women experience when they go through menopause gradually.

Women typically go through menopause between ages 45 and 55. As the ovaries curb production of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, women can experience symptoms ranging from vaginal dryness to mood swings, joint pain and insomnia.

Women who have their ovaries surgically removed, however, are thrust into menopause virtually overnight. This kind of procedure may be done to treat cancer or reduce the risk of tumors for women with a genetic risk for breast and ovarian malignancies. Surgery may also be done to remove cysts or treat endometriosis, or painful scarring in the reproductive tract.

In the current study, women who underwent surgical menopause were more than twice as likely to experience insomnia and reported lower quality sleep compared with women who went through natural menopause.

Menopause is a difficult transition for many women, both psychologically and physically, and is often not well-discussed in psychiatric or medical settings, said senior study author Sooyeon Suh of Sungshin Womens University in Seoul.

About 8 percent of women with surgical menopause and 4 percent of women with natural menopause used hormone therapy to ease symptoms.

What Matters Most To You

Your personal feelings are just as important as the medical facts. Think about what matters most to you in this decision, and show how you feel about the following statements.

Reasons to have your ovaries removed during hysterectomy

Reasons not to have your ovaries removed during hysterectomy

I will worry less about cancer if I have my ovaries removed.

I’m not that worried about cancer.

I don’t mind going into early menopause.

I don’t want to go into early menopause.

I think that removing my ovaries will help with my severe PMS symptoms.

I don’t have severe PMS symptoms.

I feel that there are more benefits to removing my ovaries than keeping them.

I feel that there are more benefits to keeping my ovaries than removing them.

Heart Palpitations After Hysterectomy

One of the scariest side effects that happened right after my surgery was heart palpitations. It felt as if my heart was constantly skipping a beat. I thought it might have just been a weird side effect from an antibiotic, but it kept happening. I almost went to the ER because it scared me so much. I had no idea that menopause could change your heart rhythm! After getting on Hormone Replacement Therapy , these arrhythmias went away.

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Are There Any Risks Related To Hormone Therapy

Like most prescribed medications, there are risks for hormone therapy. Some known health risks include:

  • Endometrial cancer .
  • Gallstones and gallbladder issues.

Going on hormone therapy is an individualized decision. Discuss all past medical conditions and your family history with your healthcare provider to understand the risks versus benefits of hormone therapy for you.

Can Menopause Be Treated

Wondering what happens to your ovaries after your ...

Menopause is a natural process that your body goes through. In some cases, you may not need any treatment for menopause. When treatment for menopause is discussed, its about treating the symptoms of menopause that disrupt your life. There are many different types of treatments for the symptoms of menopause. The main types of treatment for menopause are:

It is important to talk to your healthcare provider while you are going through menopause to craft a treatment plan that works for you. Every person is different and has unique needs.

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Can Menopause Affect Sleep

Some women may experience trouble sleeping through the night and insomnia during menopause. Insomnia is an inability to fall asleep or stay asleep at night. This can be a normal side effect of menopause itself, or it could be due to another symptom of menopause. Hot flashes are a common culprit of sleepless nights during menopause.

If hot flashes keep you awake at night, try:

  • Staying cool at night by wearing loose clothing.
  • Keeping your bedroom well-ventilated.

Avoiding certain foods and behaviors that trigger your hot flashes. If spicy food typically sets off a hot flash, avoid eating anything spicy before bed.

Removal Of The Cervix

If you have;cancer of the cervix,;ovarian cancer or womb cancer,;you may be advised to have your cervix removed to stop the cancer spreading.

Even if you do not have cancer, removing the cervix takes away any risk of developing cervical cancer in the future.

Many women are concerned that removing the cervix will lead to a loss in sexual function, but there’s no evidence to support this.

Some women are reluctant to have their cervix removed because they want to retain as much of their reproductive system as possible.

If you feel this way, ask your surgeon whether there are any;risks associated with keeping your cervix.

If you have your cervix removed, you’ll no longer need to have cervical screening tests.

If you do not have your cervix removed, you’ll need to continue having regular cervical screening.

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Hormone Therapy Could Help With Physical Changes After Surgery

If you have a hysterectomy that removes your ovaries, then you should talk about the pros and cons of estrogen therapy with your doctor, Streicher says. After the ovaries are removed, estrogen therapy can help relieve uncomfortable symptoms of menopause. However, oral hormone therapy carries increased risks of;stroke, blood clots like;deep vein thrombosis, and heart disease, which you should also discuss with your doctor.

Reactions To Surgical Menopause

What to expect with a hysterectomy

A surgical menopause can be a difficult time for many women. Menopausal symptoms are often severe, and depression and anxiety are more likely.

How you react can be influenced by the reason for the surgery. If your surgery is necessary because of a diagnosis of cancer, this creates challenges to cope with at the same time as coping with menopausal symptoms. On the other hand, if your surgery is the solution to ongoing chronic pain, then a surgical menopause may offer relief.

What’s happening in your life will affect your reactions to surgical menopause. This includes your age, whether you are in a relationship, whether you have children, whether you wanted to have children or more children, and whether you have support and help.

Some women say the impact of surgical menopause is that they no longer feel like a woman; other women feel a sense of freedom from pain and fear. Some women feel they might not be as sexually attractive to their partner, and others feel they can be more sexual because they are not worried about pain or heavy bleeding.

No feeling should be dismissed as silly or small. It is important to talk to someone if you are upset and distressed about a surgical menopause. You can ask your doctor for help with symptom relief and with referral to a psychologist to discuss your feelings.

Read Also: What Causes Vaginal Odor After Menopause

Can Menopause Affect My Sex Life

After menopause, your body has less estrogen. This major change in your hormonal balance can affect your sex life. Many menopausal women may notice that theyre not as easily aroused as before. Sometimes, women also may be less sensitive to touch and other physical contact than before menopause.

These feelings, coupled with the other emotional changes you may be experiencing, can all lead to a decreased interest in sex. Keep in mind that your body is going through a lot of change during menopause. Some of the other factors that can play a role in a decreased sex drive can include:

  • Having bladder control problems.
  • Having trouble sleeping through the night.
  • Experiencing stress, anxiety or depression.
  • Coping with other medical conditions and medications.

All of these factors can disrupt your life and even cause tension in your relationship. In addition to these changes, the lower levels of estrogen in your body can actually cause a decrease in the blood supply to the vagina. This can cause dryness. When you dont have the right amount of lubrication in the vagina, it can be thin, pale and dry. This can lead to painful intercourse.

Can I Get Pregnant During Menopause

The possibility of pregnancy disappears once you are postmenopausal, you have been without your period for an entire year . However, you can actually get pregnant during the menopause transition . If you dont want to become pregnant, you should continue to use some form of birth control until you have gone fully through menopause. Ask your healthcare provider before you stop using contraception.

For some women, getting pregnant can be difficult once theyre in their late 30s and 40s because of a decline in fertility. However, if becoming pregnant is the goal, there are fertility-enhancing treatments and techniques that can help you get pregnant. Make sure to speak to your healthcare provider about these options.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Menopause After Hysterectomy

For most women, menopause occurs when they are between the ages of late 40s to early 50s. However, women who undergo hysterectomy surgery may start experiencing the symptoms of menopause much earlier than this.

The procedure involves removal of the uterus and is used to treat a variety of conditions such as chronic pain, infection and even certain kinds of cancer. Typically, the extent of surgery required will vary depending on the reason why you are having hysterectomy. Sometimes the doctor may also recommend taking out the cervix and ovaries, which can ultimately affect the symptoms you are experiencing.

Weight Gain After A Hysterectomy

How to prevent osteoporosis after hysterectomy?  Life ...

Weight gain is commonly associated with hysterectomies, and many women claim their weight does increase after the operation. The reasons for this, however, might have less to do with the procedure itself and more to do with other factors. Read on for more information about the link between a hysterectomy and weight gain.

This procedure involves the removal of the woman’s reproductive organs. There are four types of hysterectomy:

  • Total hysterectomy. The womb and cervix are removed. This is the most common type.

  • Subtotal hysterectomy. Just the womb is removed, leaving the cervix in place. Some women prefer this, since it allows them to continue the necessary cervical stimulation for reaching orgasm.

  • Total hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy. This removes the womb, cervix, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. This procedure usually induces early or premature menopause.

  • Radical hysterectomy. The womb, fallopian tubes, part of the vagina, ovaries, lymph glands, and fatty tissue are all removed. This operation is generally only performed under extreme circumstances, such as in response to an aggressive cancer.

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Do All Menopausal Women Experience A Decrease In Sexual Desire

Not all women experience a decreased sexual desire. In some cases, its just the opposite. This could be because theres no longer any fear of getting pregnant. For many women, this allows them to enjoy sex without worrying about family planning.

However, it is still important to use protection during sex if not in a monogamous relationship. Once your doctor makes the diagnosis of menopause, you can no longer become pregnant. However, when you are in the menopause transition , you can still become pregnant. You also need to protect yourself from sexually transmitted infections . You can get an STI at any time in your life.

What Can I Do To Help With Lack Of Sex Drive

Lack of libido or sex drive can be due to many factors but in women with endometriosis it can relate to pain during intercourse or an induced menopause causing lack of the male hormone testosterone which plays an important role in the sex drive. Vaginal estrogen treatment can help vaginal dryness and pain and can be used along with lubricants during sex. An HRT called Tibolone can also be helpful as it has some androgen in it along with estrogen and progesterone and may help with women with a reduced sex drive. In some cases, your doctor may suggest using a small amount of testosterone gel alongside your continuous combined HRT to increase libido. This may take several months to take effect.

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Will Hormone Therapy Help Prevent Long

The benefits and risks of hormone therapy vary depending on a womans age and her individual history. In general, younger women in their 50s tend to get more benefits from hormone therapy as compared to postmenopausal women in their 60s. Women who undergo premature menopause are often treated with hormone therapy until age 50 to avoid the increased risk that comes from the extra years of estrogen loss.

Removal Of The Ovaries

How to Balance Your Hormones After a Hysterectomy with Dr. Jessica Drummond

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends that a woman’s ovaries should only be removed if;there’s a significant risk of associated disease, such as ovarian cancer.

If you have a family history of ovarian or breast cancer, removing your ovaries may be recommended to prevent you getting cancer in the future.

Your surgeon can discuss the;pros and cons of removing your ovaries with you. If your ovaries are removed, your fallopian tubes will also be removed.

If you have already gone through the menopause or you’re close to it, removing your;ovaries may be recommended regardless of the reason for having a;hysterectomy.

This is;to protect against the possibility of ovarian cancer developing.

Some;surgeons feel it’s best to leave healthy ovaries in place if the risk of ovarian cancer is small; for example, if there’s no family history of the condition.

This is because the ovaries produce several female hormones that can help protect against health problems such as weak bones;. They also play a part in feelings of sexual desire and pleasure.

If you’d prefer to keep your ovaries, make sure you have made this clear to;your surgeon before your operation.

You may still be asked to give;consent to treatment;for having your ovaries removed if an abnormality is found during the operation.

Think carefully about this and discuss any fears or concerns you have with your surgeon.

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Why Might Your Doctor Recommend Having Your Ovaries Removed

Your doctor may recommend having your ovaries removed when you have a hysterectomy if:

  • You have a BRCA gene change.
  • You have a strong family history of early ovarian cancer. You have a higher risk of ovarian cancer if a close family member, especially your mother or sister, has had breast cancer.
  • You have a type of breast cancer that estrogen causes to grow.
  • You have severe premenstrual syndrome that could be helped by having your ovaries removed.
  • You have had pelvic pain that involved your ovaries.

The Cons: Reasons To Lean Against Hrt After Surgical Menopause

  • Your menopausal symptoms aren’t bothering you, or other treatments work fine. Some women don’t have very severe symptoms after surgical menopause and don’t want or need treatment. Even if you do have acute symptoms, HRT is not the only way to control them. Other drugs or lifestyle changes can help. Talk to your doctor.
  • You’re 50 or older. Many women who go into surgical menopause at 50 or older — the natural time of menopause – decide not to get HRT. That’s because their supply of estrogen would naturally drop during menopause anyway. There is some evidence that the older you are when you start HRT, the higher the cardiovascular risks – at least initially.
  • You have liver disease. Estrogen pills can put a lot of stress on the liver. So if you have liver disease, your doctor may not want you to take oral HRT. Other ways of getting estrogen – like patches and gels – bypass the liver and are safer options.
  • You’re concerned about the side effects. HRT can also cause symptoms of its own. Many resemble the symptoms of premenstrual syndrome — swollen and painful breasts, headaches, and nausea.
  • You’re at a higher risk of health problems like:

o Strokes. Hormone therapy can increase the risk of stroke, although your odds are still very low.

o Blood clots. Oral estrogen, at least, may also raise the risk of blood clots. Estrogen patches and creams may pose a lower risk, but that’s still unclear.

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What Can My Health Professional Do To Help With These Symptoms

HRT is very effective at reducing menopause symptoms so starting HRT is the first thing your medical professional will offer to do. Its not clear from research when is the best time to start HRT for women with induced menopause. There can be a concern about the hormones keeping some areas of endometriosis active so sometimes it is not started for 3 to 6 months after induced menopause. However, if started immediately it can prevent bone loss and reduce menopause symptoms. This will be discussed with you.

The best HRT for women under the age of natural menopause with endometriosis contains at least two hormones, estrogen and progesterone, and is given continuously with no breaks. This can be given as tablets, patches or gel and sometimes alongside a hormone containing coil depending on what you would like and your situation. This combined HRT should be given for at least the first few years after removal of the ovaries but may be changed to oestrogen-only HRT later as it may have a better safety profile for women over the age of natural menopause. Ideally HRT should be continued until at least the age of 51 for all women in induced menopause.

For women with vaginal symptoms, vaginal estrogen tablets or cream are very effective and are safe to use alone or in combination with standard HRT in women with endometriosis. If your health professional is struggling to manage your situation they can refer you to a menopause specialist in your area to help you.


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