A fibroid grows on the muscle wall or outer surface of the uterus and is a non-cancerous growth. If medication proves unsuccessful as a treatment, surgery to remove fibroids may provide a long-term solution. If you or someone you know is supposed to have fibroid removal, it is important you know about the recovery time for fibroid surgery.
In 2006, 20 to 30 per cent of women at a reproductive age had fibroids, according to the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Approximately 200,000 to 300,000 women have hysterectomies per year.
Although many women do not have symptoms from uterine fibroids, some women have abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge, pelvic pain, low back pain or urinary problems. Women may suffer from blood loss, anaemia and pressure on the bladder, which may contribute to incontinence.
A doctor may make a diagnosis of fibroids after an examination of the shape of a pelvic exam, ultrasound, magnetic resonance imaging and hysteroscopy.
Two surgical methods exist for fibroid removal, including myomectomy and hysterectomy. The myomectomy removes fibroids and even improves the chances of having children. A hysterectomy removes the entire uterus, which may prevent fibroid regrowth for a woman who does not want any additional children.
The recovery from fibroid removal through abdominal myomectomy may require a hospital inpatient stay of a few days and recovery can take several weeks. A woman may need to take pain medication or may have restrictions on diet and activities. A woman may have limitations on lifting heavy objects, driving, going up or down stairs and engaging in sexual intercourse. A laproscopic myomectomy may lessen healing time and not require a hospital stay. A hysterectomy can require a hospital day of up to four days and restrictions for several weeks.