Hysterectomy is the second most common surgical procedure in the US., and while less invasive alternatives are growing in popularity, the majority of hysterectomies performed today are open abdominal hysterectomies.
How an Open Abdominal Hysterectomy Works
During an open hysterectomy, the uterus is detached from the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and upper vagina, as well as from the blood vessels and connective tissue that support it. The surgeon removes the uterus through a 6–12 inch incision in the lower abdomen.
In a partial hysterectomy, the lower part of the uterus (the cervix) may be left in place. With a total hysterectomy the cervix is usually removed. Depending on the condition being treated, other pelvic organs and tissue, such as your ovaries and fallopian tubes, may also be removed.
A hysterectomy is performed under general anesthesia, so your are asleep during the procedure, which lasts about an hour. A hospital stay of about two nights, possibly up to four nights, should be anticipated.
Benefits of an Open Abdominal Hysterectomy
- Provides the most effective way to explore the abdominal cavity for other potential problems
- Offers the best option when a difficult disease requires a more complicated, comprehensive surgery
How to know if an Open Abdominal Hysterectomy is the Best Option for You
An open abdominal hysterectomy is often necessary when the uterus is enlarged from fibroids or cancer, or when other pelvic organs need to be checked for disease. Your surgeon will discuss with you the range of treatment options available for your condition.