Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors
"Is hormone therapy necessary after a hysterectomy?"
I'm a woman with severe enough OBGYN problems that it might be necessary for me to get a hysterectomy sometimes soon. If I do this, will it be necessary for me to also go on hormone replacement therapy to counterbalance the effects of my missing uterus?
A hysterectomy is a procedure that can involve removal of the uterus. Sometimes, depending on the indication of the hysterectomy, the fallopian tubes and ovaries are removed as well (procedure called a salpingo oophorectomy). The best type of physician to consult about these issues is an OBGYN. The good news is that removal of your uterus will not require you to be on hormone replacement therapy. This is because your uterus does not release any hormones that would need replaced. All of you sex hormones come from ovaries which are not routinely removed in a hysterectomy. Hormone replacement therapy is reserved for situations when the ovary is removed (if you also undergo an oophorectomy). Hormone replacement therapy is also used to relieve post or peri menopausal symptoms such as hot flashes. I suggest that you schedule an appointment with your OBGYN soon. Your first step is to determine if your gynecologic problems are treatable in some other manor other than hysterectomy. Medical therapy should be explored before you resort to surgery. If you must get a hysterectomy down the road, hopefully it will not involve removal of your ovaries and you not require hormone replacement therapy. Good luck.
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