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is it common to feel "different" after having an ovary removed?

By June 11, 2009 - 12:19pm
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hi, I am 25 years old. At the age of 21, I underwent a partial hysterectomy due to massive hemorraging follwing the birth of my daughter. Anyhow, about 3 weeks ago, I had to have my left ovary removed unexpectedly because it had fused to my colon. At first, I didnt really notice any changes in the way I felt, except that I was sore at the incision sites. However, these last few days have really taken me on a ride. I feel like I have no energy whatsoever, I am lightheaded, have nausea, I get disoriented and spaced out, I feel like I am no longer motivated to do the things I used to, I go through this thing where I will be hot for 10 minutes, then I will be cold for 10 minutes, ect,and this can last hours and be completely random. Friends and family have pointed out that I ofter look flushed and I am acting differently. My doctor told me that it is normal to feel differently, but I am concerned about how different I am feeling. Any suggestion or advice?

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Expert HERWriter

Hello Amanda,

Thank you so much for visiting the website and for sharing your story with us. I'm so glad that you found us! I'm so sorry to read about your health issues. But believe me, you have come to the right place. I felt a lot like you do now after I had my complete hysterectomy. Although I'm not a doctor, my gut feeling is that your hormones are off balance. Since you have one ovary now, your body is probably getting less hormones than before.

What I would suggest doing is going to www.herplace.com for a printable list of blood work that you can ask your doctor to do for you, which will measure your hormones as well as several other things (thryoid, etc.). This is the website of Dr. Elizabeth Lee Vliet, the doctor who literally saved by life. The list is on the main page--scroll down until you find a red book that you can click on.

Once I got on the correct form of hormone replacement I started feeling better almost immediately. While I agree that your surgery was not that long ago and your body is still recovering, it's still a good idea to work with your physician to make sure your hormones are in balance. And from what you are describing they are off kilter right now. For example, the hot/cold sensations sound like a type of hot flash, and I had the light headed/can't concentrate thing going on like you wouldn't believe. I really think you will feel better soon once you get everything back in balance. Please post again and let us know how you are coming along, and again, thank you so much for sharing your story! Big hugs to you, Michelle

June 11, 2009 - 10:26pm

I had my right ovary removed in Jan. 09 and my left one removed Dec. 07 due to ovarian cysts and severe endometriosis. I still don't feel 100%! I had many of the similar symptoms you are experiencing as I was recovering in the first 2-6 weeks. They have gotten better but still feel tired and have short term memory issues. I'm taking Estradiol and that seems to help, has your doctor put you on any hormone replacement medication? Having gone from one ovary to NO ovaries was a big change for my body - the lack of hormones was a big challenge but I feel like we have that under control now. Talk to your doctor and ask him/her if your current symptoms are tied to a hormone imbalance.
Keep me posted and let me know how your doing.

June 11, 2009 - 5:44pm

I'm glad you found this site---I hope you hear from other women soon who have gone through the same surgeries that you have, and can share their experiences with you.

I can provide some health information, if you would like, but it sounds like you are wanting to hear about other's similar experiences.

If you would like some health information regarding the side effects and recovery of ovary removal, I just want to make sure I have this correct:
- you had a partial hysterectomy (you still have your cervix?)
- you've had one ovary removed (you still have one ovary?)

What information did your doctor talk with you about, regarding what you can expect from your recovery? Was it suggested that you needed to use any type of hormone replacement (what is the condition of your other ovary?), or are you using birth control or other medications?

I would like to say that having major surgery only 3 weeks ago, you will be going through many changes in your body. I have experienced a few medical conditions (preterm delivery, specifically) where the doctors and nurses told me I would be fully recovered in 3-6 weeks, and it took me much longer than this. I felt "wimpy", silly and embarrassed that I was not "fully recovered" by their timeline, but it just took me longer for some reason (and I don't consider myself a "wimpy" person!). Now that I know this about myself, I can relax in the future. I share this only because I'm wondering if the health professionals told you that the official "recovery" time for a unilateral Oophorectomy is "just a few weeks"?

Hang in there, and we will find some information for you, and hopefully you will hear from other women soon.

June 11, 2009 - 1:14pm
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