Hysterectomy Recovery: Here’s What You Can Expect

Hysterectomy Recovery:
Medically Reviewed
June 30, 2021

Having a hysterectomy is a life-changing event. But life after a hysterectomy doesn’t have to be bad. Taking time to honor your feelings and take care of your body as you recover from the procedure will lay the groundwork for you to find your new normal – and your new normal will be better than your old one!

Take Time to Prepare Yourself and Your Family for Your Hysterectomy Recovery

If you have the opportunity, prepare yourself and your family before your procedure about what to expect afterward. Then allow your family and friends to support you in whatever way they can. Keep your expectations reasonable. They’re going through an adjustment process too. Also, you should ask your doctor how long to take off work after hysterectomy?

Recovery Time After Hysterectomy

When You Wake Up at the Hospital

You may wake up feeling tired. Painkillers will help reduce any pain or discomfort you’re in.

If you feel ill because of the anesthetic, your nurse can give you medicine to help. You may feel like you need to make a bowel movement. This is normal.

The day after surgery, your nurse will encourage you to take a short walk to promote blood flow and reduce the risk of complications developing. In addition, a physical therapist may teach you some exercises to support mobility and pelvic floor health.

Recovery from Hysterectomy Week By Week

The amount of time you spend recovering in the hospital and at home depends on what type of hysterectomy you had, your age, and the state of health you are in.

If you had an abdominal hysterectomy:

  • This is the most invasive type of surgery
  • 2-3 days in the hospital after surgery
  • 6 to 8 weeks resting at home
  • No lifting for the first two weeks
  • Walking is encouraged
  • Abstain from sex for at least six weeks

Talk to your doctor about what is or isn’t appropriate for you to undertake during your recovery time.

A vaginal or laparoscopic-assisted vaginal hysterectomy (LAVH):

  • This procedure is less invasive than an abdominal one.
  • 1-2 days in the hospital
  • Two weeks to recover at home
  • Walking is encouraged during recovery
  • No heavy lifting for two weeks
  • Abstain from sex for 6 weeks

If you had a laparoscopic supracervical hysterectomy (LSH):

  • This procedure is the least invasive
  • 1-2 days in the hospital
  • 6 days to 2 weeks of recovery time at home
  • Walking is encouraged during recovery
  • No heavy lifting or sex until you are fully recovered

If you had a robotic hysterectomy:

  • 1-2 days in the hospital
  • 3 to 4 weeks recovery time at home
  • Walking is encouraged during recovery
  • No heavy lifting or sex for 6 weeks

Robotic hysterectomy recovery time is shorter and less painful than after an abdominal hysterectomy. However, if your cervix is removed, your recovery will look more like the description for LAVH.

Healing After Hysterectomy

If severe symptoms like bleeding, pelvic pain, and abdominal bloating led you to have a hysterectomy, there’s good news! You should experience relief from those symptoms, and you may have better sex and increased libido.

If your ovaries were removed, you might experience some other symptoms, especially if you had not yet gone through menopause before the procedure. Because your body is no longer producing the same amounts of estrogen and progesterone, you will probably have symptoms of menopause like hot flashes, mood swings, vaginal dryness, and night sweats.

You may also have some changes in your libido and enjoyment of sex. Hormone replacement therapy can assist in alleviating the rollercoaster ride of symptoms. If you experience pain during intercourse, trying different positions and lubricants can help.

Your pelvis muscles may weaken, especially if you already had pelvic weakness before the hysterectomy. Pelvic weakness can lead to bladder or bowel problems. Practicing Kegel exercises can help strengthen pelvic muscles and relieve urinary incontinence problems.

What You Can Expect Emotionally

Whatever feelings or emotions arise during this time, honor them and share them with someone you trust.

If you were looking forward to the relief that a hysterectomy was going to bring to you, you might be surprised by feelings of grief. It’s not uncommon to feel a sense of loss. If you feel grief over the loss of your uterus and your ability to have children, that’s normal.

If your surgery was motivated by illness or cancer, you might feel depressed. This is normal too. Enlisting the support of your doctor or a mental health therapist will help you make your way through them and back to the lighter side.

Many women feel happy after their hysterectomy. That’s normal too!

Hysterectomy Recovery Tips

If you can let go of the expectation that “things are going to go back to normal” after your hysterectomy, you’ll get to your new normal in a lot less time and with a lot less frustration. Here are some tips about what to do and how to get there.

Eat a well-balanced diet of protein, fruits, and vegetables. Increase your fiber intake if you have a tendency towards constipation.

Drink 8-10 glasses of fluids a day.

You can expect to return to work after 4 to 8 weeks. After that, it will depend on how you feel and what sort of work you do.

Wait to drive until you’re comfortable wearing a seatbelt and can perform an emergency stop. In addition, some auto insurance companies require a certificate from your doctor stating that you’re fit to drive.

The hospital should give you information and advice about appropriate forms of exercise while you recover.

Rest. You’ll probably feel more tired than usual.

Wait to have sex until your scars have healed and any vaginal discharge has ceased.

There’s no need to use contraception to prevent pregnancy, but you’ll still need to use condoms to protect yourself against sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

How Long Does it Take to Recover from a Hysterectomy?

Recovering from a hysterectomy takes time. Getting back to your life after a hysterectomy will take some time, but you can do it. Nava’s BHRT and Nutrition Counseling and Planning can help!

Seeking natural hormone replacement therapy after your hysterectomy?

Contact the professionals at Nava Health and Vitality Center.

Image Attribution 


Web MD

Website | + posts

A Medical Director, and one of the first physicians to join the Nava Health & Vitality Center, Dr. Douglas Lord has made significant contributions to our Center and its founding principles. Dr. Lord has helped develop and implement the Nava Method™—Nava’s proprietary approach to total body wellness. He has also been instrumental in liaising with other expert practitioners to successfully implement Nava’s range of therapies, treatments, and products.

Article Name
Hysterectomy Recovery: Here's What You Can Expect
Take time to prepare yourself and your family for your hysterectomy recovery. Read on to learn more about what you can expect after a hysterectomy.