Healthwise: Hysterectomy Rehab Class

By: Stephanie Satchell Email
By: Stephanie Satchell Email

September 22, 2010

A rehab class in Charlottesville is helping women recover after a hysterectomy.

Megan Driscoll, a physical therapist at the Martha Jefferson Outpatient Center, teaches women exercises to help them recover.

A hysterectomy is a surgery to remove the uterus, and women typically undergo the procedure if they have tumors, fibroids or excessive bleeding in their uterus.

“A hysterectomy is a major surgery and recovery is anywhere from four to six weeks, sometimes twelve,” said Driscoll.

That's why it's so important for women to get the proper care they need during the surgery, and in the weeks to follow.

In the rehabilitation class, Driscoll focuses on four areas: improving energy level, decreasing pain after surgery, scar massage, performing proper kegel contractions or strengthening their vaginal muscles.

“So, we start by educating a patient how to do an abdominal brace exercise. They tighten their abdominal muscles and the pelvic floor at the same time which helps them to use before lifting, coughing, sneezing, and getting out of bed,” said Driscoll.

Not only does the rehab class teach exercises to help physically heal the body, Driscoll says it’s good emotional support as well.

“I think the most important thing that the class provides is a great venue for women to meet other women who have had a similar experience to know that they’re not alone,” she said.

Driscoll hopes women will take the tools that they've learned in class to help them get back on their feet at home.

If you're interested in more information, or would like to sign up for one of the rehab classes, you can call Health Connection at 434-654-7009 or visit the Martha Jefferson Hospital Website.

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