Sex and vaginal dryness after hysterectomy

Sex drive after hysterectomy


You may have heard that your sex drive will go down after a hysterectomy and that you’ll no longer enjoy sex. Actually, about 75% of women find that their libido remains unchanged and 20% actually had increased sexual desire. If you expect to have lower libido you may actually think yourself into it.

However, for some couples, the experience of going through a hysterectomy increases the bond between them and sex is better than ever. If your sex drive is low after your hysterectomy, it may be because your ovaries were removed, resulting in hormone imbalance. Natural hormones may help you.

Orgasm after hysterectomy

You may be worried that you won’t be able to climax after your hysterectomy. If you experienced orgasm deep within your pelvis, you may have difficulty climaxing because your uterus and cervix are absent. You can still enjoy orgasm but you’ll have to learn how to do it through stimulation of your clitoris. This will require some patience so don’t despair.

How to ease back into sex after a hysterectomy

  • You may need several weeks to heal completely after your operation. Be sure to ask your gynecologist when it is safe for you to resume intercourse.
  • Be open with your partner and help him to understand that you need time to recover. Don’t be afraid to touch and hold each other during this time.
  • Fear of painful intercourse may lead to vaginal dryness and discomfort during intercourse. If you are well lubricated there should be no pain as your clitoris and labia (the lips covering the vaginal opening) are not affected by the operation.
  • Encourage your partner to gently caress your clitoris. This should help with vaginal lubrication and arouse you.
  • Guide your partner’s finger into your vagina slowly and gently. When you’re comfortable, introduce his penis slowly and gently into your vagina. He should not thrust until you’re ready.
  • Once the two of you are comfortably, normal sexual desire should return and you may proceed to have normal intercourse.
  • If vaginal dryness remains a problem, a lubricating jelly should help. In the long run you may need a natural progesterone/natural estrogen combination cream, especially if your ovaries have been removed.
  • If you continue to experience pain in spite of all you precautions, consult your gynecologist.

Vaginal dryness after a hysterectomy

vaginal dryness after hysterectomyAfter a hysterectomy, you probably have many emotions and questions running through your mind. You may feel great relief from any previous pain or discomfort you had. You might feel a sense of loss or sadness.  As you continue to heal and have some recovery time, you may notice one of the not so comfortable post-operative side effects of vaginal dryness. If so, do not panic because you are not alone. Lots of women suffer from vaginal dryness after hysterectomy and there are quite a few ways to manage it.

What causes vaginal dryness after hysterectomy?

During a hysterectomy the uterus is removed by itself or the uterus is removed along with the ovaries. When the ovaries are removed as well, this causes a rapid change in your body’s hormones. The dryness you experience is a result of decreased estrogen levels. The ovaries are your body’s primary source for the hormone, estrogen.

Even if your ovaries are left intact, you may still have vaginal dryness soon after having a hysterectomy.

The ovaries receive their blood supply from several sources. The blood vessels that supply the uterus also nourish the ovaries. By removing the uterus with its blood supply you are also tampering with the nutrition of the ovaries. Women who have had a hysterectomy with their ovaries left behind are approximately 2 times more likely to develop ovarian failure compared to women of the same age who still have a uterus.

Estrogen is the hormone that is responsible for the female secondary sex characteristics

:

  • Formation of breasts
  • Thickening of the endometrium
  • Regulating the menstrual cycle
  • Uterine growth
  • Thickening of the vaginal wall
  • Vaginal lubrication

What can help vaginal dryness after hysterectomy?

If you are experiencing vaginal dryness after your hysterectomy, you should speak with your gynecologist. You may already be taking hormone supplements, in which case your physician may test your hormonal levels to see if your estrogen levels are within normal limits. If your estrogen levels are not within range, they may decide to increase your dosage. If you are not on any hormone supplements they may suggest starting one. This usually helps with a range of other symptoms that occur after a hysterectomy as well.

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7 Comments:

  1. I am 23, and have been thinking about having at least a partial hysterectomy due to the fact that if i get pregnant again, I will more than likely have a miscarriage, and I will die. Also, when I have my meunstrals, the cramping is so bad it feels like I am being stabbed, and I bleed excessively all the way through. Another reason is because my mom had her tubes tied after I was born, and I have lost count of how many miscarriages she has had. The most recent miscarriage was four years ago, and she went to 7 months, then miscarried due to going through menopause. I was considering at least the partial hysterectomy to have a guarantee that I would not get pregnant again. Any feedback is welcomed. —–Kirah

  2. I found this site in sheer desperation. I struggled with wanting to get pregnant but having a history of birth defect in my brother and a very real fear of having children. My marriage was not very stable and our socioeconomic situation was not so secure, although we both had jobs at the time. I had fibroids and no matter what my OB and I did with therapies they just kept getting bigger. I ended up waiting until I couldn’t stand it anymore and went through an abdominal hysterectomy. I was in my late 30s. It was devastating to me, all hope of having children gone. Yet in the years to follow I learned that indeed the risks of my having a child with birth defects were significant because of a rare genetic X chromosome I carried. It has helped to come to terms with that, but I will always feel sad about not having a family. Not very long after I had the hysterectomy, my husband began acusing me of cheating on him (when that is the last thing that was on my mind!). He started acting very strange, demanding a divorce, and dating other women while was still living with me. This was the LAST thing I needed right after a hysterectomy. I was devastated. He was comparing me to others. I had NO support for my situation. We separated and divorced after 18 years of marriage. I became estranged from his family, as I guess they believe his accusations. I never cheated on him. I stuck with him through hard times. Now I am alone and struggling at the age of 56 to survive. I don’t have anyone really in my life who understands the whole story of what happened, and instead take the easy route of blaming me, not knowing anything why I was reluctant to have children but desiring them at the same time. I don’t know how to live a life like this. It is so difficult. People are so critical of me and I feel so alone. I long to feel just my femininity and the carefree way I once felt in my bones. I am afraid of men now in general and relationships and being hurt or misunderstood again. I do have a male friend who seems to accept me as I am and we are not romantically involved. Thank you for letting me vent. It just builds up and builds in me from time to time.

    • Hi hanna. i know how you feel. men can be pigs. I had a full Hysterectomy. They took everything out. I live with my daughter and I tell her that i could never have a normal sex life. Why i got it ? Cus my menstrual was very bad. Your not alone Hanna. It hurts that i cannot feel nothing when i watch anything sexy on t.v. hahaha. I’m not making fun of you Hanna. Is just sometimes i got to laugh about anything and sometimes i feel depressed,and have not patients. But,my daughter is understanding. take care hanna everything will be ok, pray pray maybe u think it won’t help but you have to believe. Mary

  3. “Actually, about 75% of women find that their libido remains unchanged and 20% actually had increased sexual desire. ”
    Are you quoting from the study in Norway that interviewed 409 women? If so, that study was full of holes and has been debunked.
    Hysterectomy destroys a womans sex life by;1) Severing all the nerves that supply sensation to the vagina, labia, clitoris. 2)Disrupting the blood supply to same.3) Removing the uterus is removing the biggest erogenous zone. 4)If ovaries were removed (castration) you have instant hormone loss that no synthetic hormone or herbal concoction can replace.

    Though your scenario would work with an intact woman who might be gun shy, it does not and will not work for a hysterectomised woman.

    How in the world does going through a hysterectomy strengthen the bond between couples? Is that some kind of sick sadistic kind of relationship? ‘My husband loves me more since all my goods were yanked.’ or ‘Losing my uterus and sex drive and having my entire life destroyed has made my marriage stronger because now he has a real reason to b*tch.’ ???

    I’m almost 2 years post op. My marriage stinks because I can’t have sex anymore. There was no real reason for these butchers to do this to me and I sometimes wish I would have died on the table.

    Please contact the HERS Foundation or browse my website to get information your not going to get from the Doctors.
    Once your sex drive is gone, with your uterus, nothing will bring it back. Your sex life will be a bitter memory and you’ll live a life full of anger and pain after hysterectomy.

    • Finally, someone said it! I would love more information on your website. I wish I would have had more information, or been more open to other alternatives before getting a total hysterectomy at the age of 42. It ruined me. We also need information on how to get our lives back without hormones, especially if we can not take them.

  4. hi bobbie sorry to hear the above.

    i know where i live it it not routine or even comon for them to do a ct125, can iask when you come from?as im from kent.
    got dianosed with endometriosis in oct last year at the age of 20 and i cant even have a smear test , yet some of the symtoms are quite alike. here we cant have smears till we are 25 thats another five years of worry.x

  5. I went to my doctor for a cyst on my right ovary. He did not offer me a ct125 test for cancer and insisted the cyst was most likely cancer and needed to be removed. He then proceeded to preform a total abdominal hysterectomy on me even though I said no to this procedure. My life ended that day. Hysterectomy is akin to male castration which is NOT a routine surgery as hysterectomy is. Why?? Why are we women taken advantage of and lied to as to hysterectomy and it’s lasting effects? My doctor ruined my life and this happens every minute of every day. Please read ‘The H Word’ by Nora Coffey before making ANY decisions involving surgery. It is YOUR life. Protect it.

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