Being a Mother After a Hysterectomy

18 May, 2018
 

In this article we’ll discuss the topic of becoming a mother after a hysterectomy.

Certain conditions in women’s reproductive systems attack the uterus, the organ where gestation takes place. If the uterus is removed, the chances of having a child are reduced, but are they gone completely?

Despite being the second cause of surgery for women (the first being a cesarean section), many women aren’t exactly aware of what a hysterectomy is.

Therefore, before proceeding with this article’s main subject, we’ll provide a general overview of this type of surgery.

In addition, we’ll discuss its possible triggers, the effect it has on women’s health and the types that exist.

Finally, we’ll focus on answering the main question: is it possible to become a mother after a hysterectomy?

What is a hysterectomy?

A hysterectomy is an operation that involves the partial or total removal of the uterus. Since this is where the fetus grows and matures, many women wonder if they can become a mother after a hysterectomy.

Being a Mother After a Hysterectomy

As a result of an operation like this, a woman will stop having menstrual periods and will enter menopause if both of the Fallopian tubes and ovaries are also removed.

 

However, usually only one ovary is removed, if necessary.

Types of hysterectomy

Hysterectomies can be classified into three types:

  • Total: in addition to the entire uterus, the cervix is also removed. It isn’t always necessary to remove the Fallopian tubes or the ovaries.
  • Partial: in this, only the upper part of the organ is removed, without affecting the cervix.
  • Radical: the entire uterus, cervix, tissue on both sides of the cervix and the upper part of the vagina are removed. It is used to eradicate certain types of cancer.

When is a hysterectomy appropriate?

Hysterectomy provides one form of treatment for various conditions that can occur in a woman’s reproductive system. Some of them include:

  • Fibroids or uterine fibroids: benign tumors formed by muscle tissue that occur within or around the uterus.
  • Endometriosis: a hysterectomy is performed when endometriosis cannot be treated with medicine or surgery.
  • Uterine prolapse: this occurs when the uterus descends into the vagina.
  • Cancer of the uterus, cervix or ovaries.
  • Vaginal bleeding that doesn’t respond to primary treatment.
  • Adenomyosis: occurs when the tissue that lines the uterus grows inside the organ’s walls. Thus, the walls thicken, causing severe pain and profuse bleeding.

However, as noted by the Office for Women’s Health, part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, it is a last-resort treatment.

Being a major surgery, a hysterectomy is only carried out when previous alternatives don’t provide the expected result.

 

According to this same organization, about half a million women undergo this operation every year in the U.S.

A hysterectomy is an operation that involves the partial or total removal of the uterus.

Is it possible to become a mother after a hysterectomy?

The uterus is a fundamental organ in the gestation process. The fetus lives inside the uterus for nine months, during which time it goes from a tiny embryo to a baby ready to see the light.

This would mean you cannot be a mother after a hysterectomy. However, technological advances have opened new doors for this to happen.

As long as your ovaries aren’t removed, your ovules can still be used for in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Being a Mother After a Hysterectomy

Logically, the baby will be gestated in another uterus. This is called a surrogate pregnancy. It would be like “renting” another woman’s uterus.

This process generates great social, legal, ethical and religious controversies.

For it to succeed, the process consists of:

  • Removing the ovules from the woman who had a hysterectomy.
  • Generating embryos via IVF.
  • Transplanting the embryos into the surrogate mother’s uterus.
 
  • Pregnancy, birth and delivering the baby to the mother.

Undoubtedly, this procedure requires immense solidarity from the pregnant woman.

It’s a gesture of deep love that allows a person who cannot achieve it any other way to form a family thanks to reproductive technology.

However, the laws of each country may or may not allow this procedure.

  • Sotero, G., Yovarone, R., Laborde, A., Sosa, C., Domínguez, Á., & Martínez, J. (2002). La histerectomía vaginal en útero no prolapsado: una vieja’nueva’opción. Revista Peruana de Ginecología y Obstetricia48(2), 85-92.
  • Aguilar Ponce, S., Safora Enríquez, O., & Rodríguez Izquierdo, A. (2012). La histerectomía obstétrica como un problema vigente. Revista Cubana de Obstetricia y Ginecología38(1), 107-116.