It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....

Hysterectomy Message Board

  • Maintaining health after Bilateral Oophorectomy. Please help.

  • Post New Thread   Closed Thread
    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Old 10-14-2013, 11:54 AM   #1
    annapo's Avatar
    Join Date: Oct 2013
    Posts: 1
    annapo HB User
    Question Maintaining health after Bilateral Oophorectomy. Please help.


    I have a few questions, please, regarding Bilateral Oophorectomy (removal of both Ovaries), I know I've written a lot but please, if you have any experience/knowledge about it, then please help me because I'm very worried about this matter.

    I have gone through prophylactic Oophorectomy with Hysterectomy (Womb removal) six years ago at the age of 51, as far as Menopause - I can't remember exactly but I think that I might have had a Pre-Menopause at the time of surgery but don't think I was past Menopause altogether.

    At the time of surgery the doctor didn't go into specifics in explaining what and why and I didn't know enough and didn't ask enough. But the surgery was done due to a polyp in the Womb and the doctor said that it was necessary to remove it.

    Just recently during my first visit to my new physician, after a couple of routine questions, he asked me whether I've received hormone treatment after the Oophorectomy, and I haven't - nothing as such was mentioned by the doctor six years ago as there probably was no need for it.

    So that started the conversation about the surgery during which the physician told me more about this matter, mostly things I didn't know - also regarding the potential long term risks of Oophorectomy which weren't mentioned at the time of surgery, so I'm pretty freaked out hearing these things just now.

    Eventually after some tests the physician said that right now there doesn't seem to be any need in any hormone treatments, and just the usual - healthy diet, staying active and routine checks.

    However, I'm still very concerned - my main concern is with everything said and done till now - what options does a person who's six years (that is during which not much in particular post-Oophorectomy has been done) past an Oophorectomy have in terms of getting/keeping healthy other than the obvious above mentioned things?

    I've been reading a lot about life expectancy and long term risks of Oophorectomy and about Estrogens that may be insufficient due to the lack of Ovaries, I'm really worried as it's an overwhelming amount of information - is all the scary info really due to insufficient Estrogen and this is all due to having no Ovaries?

    I also read about Phytoestrogens particularly in Pomegranates and Soy and how they can help post-menopausal women, but are these good for post-Oophorectomy women too - can estrogens do any good now six years past surgery? Are there any other either dietary or else changes that are crucial?

    Please, if someone could share any experiences/thoughts/suggestions?

    I truly appreciate any info anybody could give me. Thank you very very much!

    Sponsors Lightbulb
    Old 10-15-2013, 10:11 AM   #2
    Senior Veteran
    Join Date: Dec 2008
    Location: St. Louis, MO, USA
    Posts: 1,878
    STLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB UserSTLouisgal HB User
    Re: Maintaining health after Bilateral Oophorectomy. Please help.


    I'm sorry that you weren't given the complete facts before your surgery. I had a similar situation 7 years ago. I had an ovarian cyst that had a small chance of being cancerous. Even though it was shown to be benign while I was in the operating room, my gynecologist of 20 years proceeded to remove the rest of my organs anyway. He should have removed JUST the cyst. I was almost 50 years old at the time but it has had devastating effects on every aspect of my being.

    To this day, I find it disturbing how often women's healthy organs are removed. To many gynecologists treat them as disposable once we've completed our families. But as you've discovered, the uterus and ovaries have functions far beyond reproduction - pelvic and skeletal integrity, hormonal / endocrine, and sexual. Just as they remove lumps from the breasts, they should be removing cysts, polyps, fibroids versus the entire organ(s). And it makes no sense that "while they are in there" they remove organs that have absolutely nothing wrong! In almost all cases, these growths are benign and don't even need to be removed unless they're causing debilitating symptoms. Even ACOG has determined (based on a 2000 study) that 76% of hysterectomies don't meet their criteria.

    I'm at least thankful that I was "older" when my organs were removed. I've read so many cases where much younger women are having hysterectomies and/or oophorectomies and it breaks my heart. And in VERY few cases have their doctors told them the adverse effects and increased health risks. The perplexing thing is that testicular cancer rates are pretty much the same as ovarian cancer rates (lifetime risk is less than 2%) yet they don't remove men's healthy testicles!

    Now on to the health risks of pre- or post-menopausal oophorectomy and how to mitigate those. It sounds like you've read a number of the studies showing the increased risks such as heart disease, osteoporosis, stroke, Parkinsonism, dementia, cognitive and memory impairment, depression, anxiety, sleep disturbances / sleep quality, decline in well-being, loss of sexual desire and response, hot flashes, night sweats.

    You didn't mention having any specific symptoms since your surgery. Are you not having any or are they not very bothersome? I had severe symptoms. The worst ones were severe depression, very fragmented sleep, loss of all concentration (as if I'd developed ADD), no energy, no motivation, loss of all sexuality, RAPID aging (lost most of my hair and skin collagen within months). I was on estrogen but it wasn't enough or wasn't a consistent enough delivery. Once I found a better HRT, the symptoms improved greatly. Fat makes estrogen and I'm a small build so I don't make much of my own. I also worry about my bones but would be even more concerned if I wasn't taking estrogen. Bone loss can happen very quickly after the ovaries are removed. Have you had a DEXA scan to check your bone density?

    I've read that the ovaries of a woman with all her parts produce hormones (estrogen, testosterone, and androstenedione) into her 80's for optimal health. So I plan to take some form of HRT for many years to come, not only to hopefully mitigate some of the documented harm of ovary removal but also for day-to-day functioning. There are OTC menopausal supplements as well as estrogenic foods that may be helpful but generally aren't enough for surgical menopause symptoms or health. I personally am not a fan of soy as I've read a number of negatives about it. I think it depends on the form also. But soy is bad for the thyroid too and ovary removal puts a lot of added burden on the rest of the endocrine system such as the thyroid and adrenals.

    I think it's important that we do our own research. As you and I have unfortunately discovered, we can't always count on doctors to know everything or to divulge everything they do know!

    I hope this gives you some things to consider. Best of health to you!

    Closed Thread

    estrogen, health, hysterectomy, oophorectomy, ovaries

    Thread Tools Search this Thread
    Search this Thread:

    Advanced Search

    Posting Rules
    You may not post new threads
    You may not post replies
    You may not post attachments
    You may not edit your posts

    BB code is On
    Smilies are On
    [IMG] code is Off
    HTML code is Off
    Trackbacks are Off
    Pingbacks are Off
    Refbacks are Off

    Sign Up Today!

    Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

    I want my free account

    All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:17 AM.

    © 2020 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved.
    Do not copy or redistribute in any form!