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Myomectomy
Myomectomy Side effects and recovery

Myomectomy Recovery - What to expect

A myomectomy, a procedure that surgically removes uterine fibroids while keeping the uterus intact, can have varying recovery times. Compared to open procedures, minimally invasives procedures offer shorter recovery times and more effective results.

Even if a myomectomy is performed minimally invasively, it’s still a surgical procedure. To ensure complete healing, the recovery instructions given to you by your surgeon should be closely followed. Improper recovery can lead to risks and complications such as blood loss and the formation of adhesions. A successful and complete recovery can result in long-term pain relief and improved fertility.

It’s important to remember that recovery will look different for every patient. Our doctors know each patient who has the LAAM procedure — CIGC’s exclusive minimally invasive myomectomy — is unique and each case may have different recovery requirements. In most cases, patients are able to increase their activity after several days and are even able to exercise within a week of the procedure. The recovery process may be gradual, but most patients should feel a little better each day.

Physical Side Effects

After a myomectomy, you may experience the following physical side effects:

  • Bruises
  • Bleeding
  • Swelling
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Urinary retention
  • Pain around the incision sites 
  • Pelvic and rectal pain
  • Chest and shoulder pain
  • Nausea

Myomectomy Recovery Time

Overall recovery time after a myomectomy will vary from person to person, so it’s important not to compare yourself to someone else’s recovery. For most patients, we provide the following guidance on resuming regular activities after recovering from a myomectomy:

  • Getting back to work, school or other daily activities: Patients may resume most daily activities as quickly as seven to 10 days after a surgery that removed smaller uterine fibroids. Patients who needed larger or a greater number of uterine fibroids removed may have a slightly longer recovery of as many as two to three weeks.
  • Sex: Intercourse should be avoided for at least two weeks or until the recommended time frame provided by your surgeon. Then, you may resume intercourse once you feel comfortable.
  • Driving: All CIGC patients need to be accompanied by another adult to take them home after surgery. You may only begin driving after you have stopped taking narcotic pain medication. If you feel strong enough to be able to stop the vehicle in an emergency, you are ready to begin driving again. If you are not confident, have someone else drive you where you need to go.

Recovery time will also vary based on the myomectomy procedure. Average length of recovery for each procedure type is as follows:

  • LAAM: 10-14 days
  • Abdominal: Up to eight weeks
  • Non-LAAM laparoscopic: Up to three weeks
  • Robotic: Up to three weeks

CIGC LAAM Procedure Standard Laparoscopic Robotic Open
Length of Procedure
1-1.5 hours
2.5 hours
3-4 hours
2-2.5 hours
Number of Incisions
2
3-4
4-7
1 large
Hospital Stay
0 days
1 day
2-3 days
Recovery Time
10-14 days
Up to 3 weeks
Up to 3 weeks
Up to 8 weeks

Myomectomy Recovery Tips

After surgery, patients are given a prescription for Motrin and a narcotic pain reliever. For best results, Motrin should be used in doses of 600 milligrams every six hours or 800 milligrams every eight hours. Narcotics should be used sparingly because they can cause side effects like constipation and nausea. For the first few days, most patients use Motrin or extra-strength Tylenol during the day and then switch to narcotics at night to help with sleep. Follow your doctor’s instructions for resuming any regular medication or supplement use after surgery.

To help with abdominal pain relief, we suggest using a heating pad on the lower abdomen. Coughing can also exacerbate abdominal pain, so you might try placing a pillow in a way that supports the abdomen while coughing.

It’s important to get adequate rest when recovering from a myomectomy. It may help to go for short walks during the first few days after surgery but use caution when starting or resuming an exercise routine. It’s best to start out slowly over time, and then you can gradually increase workout time, distance and speed.

Take extra care when handling your incision sites for any reason. After a shower or bath, lightly pat the incision sites dry with a clean towel. Keep the incision sites clean and dry while they are actively healing.

 

Fertility Plans After a Myomectomy

Many women undergo a myomectomy to remove fibroids without impacting their uterus so they can preserve their fertility options for the future. But while you may be eager to start your fertility journey right after surgery, it’s essential for the uterus to completely heal before trying to conceive. The healing process for the uterus may take up to a few months.

If the uterus is not completely healed or repaired before becoming pregnant, it increases the risk of placental abruption during pregnancy, creating a dangerous situation for both the baby and the mother. Consult with your surgeon on the recommended timing before proceeding with fertility plans or treatments.

When to Call a Doctor

Recovery doesn’t always go as planned. If any of the following occurs, it’s important to call your doctor right away:

  • Having pain that doesn’t go away after taking pain medication
  • Constipation that doesn’t resolve
  • Severe nausea that doesn’t resolve
  • Being unable to drink fluids
  • Loose or open incisions
  • Having bright red blood soaking through the bandage over the incision
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, severe malaise
  • Having signs of infection (e.g., swelling, pus from the incision site, fever, etc.)
  • Heavy or prolonged vaginal bleeding
  • Signs of a blood clot in the leg (e.g., pain or redness in calf, back of knee, thigh or groin)

The CIGC Difference

Not only does CIGC’s LAAM procedure involve smaller incisions and less pain, it’s also a fibroid removal procedure with one of the smoothest and quickest recoveries.1 LAAM was developed and perfected by our GYN surgical specialists to improve patient outcomes and give those who want to bear children their best chance at fertility. 

For more information on what to expect from a minimally invasive myomectomy with CIGC, set up a consultation with one of our specialists today. We’re ready to evaluate your case and recommend the procedure that will help you find long-term relief.

References:

  1. MacKoul P, Baxi R, Danilyants N, van der Does LQ, Haworth LR, Kazi N. Laparoscopic-Assisted Myomectomy with Bilateral Uterine Artery Occlusion/Ligation. J Minim Invasive Gynecol. 2019;26(5):856-864. doi:10.1016/j.jmig.2018.08.016