A hysterectomy is the surgical removal of a woman's uterus (womb). The procedure is performed because doctors have diagnosed such conditions as fibroid tumors, endometriosis, cancer (cervical, uterine, or endometrial), or a blockage of the bladder or intestines. Hysterectomy eliminates the possibility of menstruation and pregnancy. The operation and technique used will be based on the patient's specific diagnosis. There are several types of hysterectomies. A total hysterectomy is the most common and includes removal of the entire uterus and the cervix. A radical hysterectomy removes the uterus, cervix and possibly the tissue around it, the top part of the vagina, and possibly pelvic lymph nodes. The supracervical hysterectomy (partial or subtotal) removes the upper part of the uterus but not the cervix. Traditional hysterectomies are performed through the abdomen via a surgical incision. Surgery may be through the vagina, commonly with a minimally invasive technique called laparoscopy. Minimally invasive robotic hysterectomy is a newer technique used especially for complex situations such as very large fibroid tumors. Hysterectomy requires a hospital stay of a day or two but longer in the presence of cancer. Recovery times are up to six weeks for abdominal surgery, four for a vaginal hysterectomy, and usually less than four if the surgery is robot- or laparoscope-assisted.
As part of the UAB Division of Women's Reproductive Healthcare, UAB Obstetrics and Gynecology’s services range from complete obstetric care to the medical and surgical treatment of complicated gynecological concerns. We work closely with the UAB Medicine Interventional Radiology team to diagnose and treat your condition, using the latest and most accurate technology and imaging methods, including fluoroscopy, ultrasound, and CT scans. Because UAB Medicine is an academic health center, patients may be offered participation in clinical research trials, which can give you access to new techniques and treatments that are not available elsewhere in the area. Our physicians are here for you at all times, from your first routine gynecological exam, to delivering your baby, to guiding you through menopause. When you establish a relationship with our doctors, you can rely upon that relationship throughout your lifetime.
Robot-Assisted Hysterectomy at UAB Medicine
UAB is an active participant in research and clinical trials. We encourage you to speak to your physician about research and clinical trial options and browse the link below for more information.View Clinical Trials