Hysterectomies are performed for a wide variety of reasons. A hysterectomy is a major surgery, but with new technological advances, the discomfort, risk of infection and recovery time has all been decreased. Different types of hysterectomies include: Partial, total, and supracervical (above the cervix.) There are multiple ways to have this surgery performed but for the basis of this article, we will focus on laparoscopically. In this procedure, a laparoscope uses a thin, lighted tube put through a cut or incision in the belly to look at the abdominal organs or the female pelvic organs. There are many advantages to having a laparoscopic hysterectomy, such as, shorter recovery time and increased visibility of anatomy.
Laparoscopic Assisted Vaginal Hysterectomy. This is when a portion of the operation (intra-abdominal) is completed with the laparoscope and the remainder of the operation (vaginal incision, excision of cervical tissues) is completed transvaginally.
Total Laparoscopic Hysterectomy. The entire operation is performed using the laparoscope and the surgical specimen is removed via the vagina.
A big difference between traditional and open hysterectomy is location and size of the incision. An open hysterectomy includes a low horizontal incision, sometimes even accessed through a previous c-section scar. Total Laparoscopic Hysterectomies usually takes 1-3 hours under general anesthesia. You will be hospitalized for at least one night so your physicians can monitor your healing progress. Most patients return to normal daily activities within one week. Your physician will give you detailed instructions so your recovery is easily manageable.