Apparently, women undergoing hysterectomies are at higher risk for weight gain initially after surgery. Although hysterectomy is likely to relieve women of their problems (which lead to this surgical procedure), many women complain of weight gain as a side effect of hysterectomy. According to data, the average amount of weight gain in the first year after surgery is somewhere about twenty five pounds.
Though this gain in weight is likely to slow down after the first year, it can still continue unless interrupted with preventive steps. Even though weight gain is common post hysterectomy, data is not abundant revealing the relation between the surgical procedure and weight gain. There are some factors which can be related to this gain in weight.
Factor Responsible For Weight Gain After Hysterectomy
Body Or Structure
The biology of a woman may be related to gain in weight post hysterectomy. A heavier woman and one having weight fluctuations during adulthood may experience post surgical weight gain.
Such a woman can benefit from lifestyle changes aimed at maintaining/losing weight in the months following the operation.
Type Of Surgery
Data suggests that about one third of women experience hysterectomy during their lifetime. Women having hysterectomy without bilateral oophorectomy have been found to weigh more with higher body mass index (BMI). Such women can be more obese than those having (intact) uteri and ovaries.
A study aimed at evaluating the risk for ovarian failure (in hysterectomy) without bilateral oophorectomy showed weight change to be more evident among women having hysterectomies in the first year post surgery. The comparison was done with a control group of women having uteri intact.
Women still having their ovaries can also experience weight gain after hysterectomy. Even though hormonal levels are not disrupted, there can be restricted blood flow to the pelvic area. Decreased blood supply implies fewer hormone production affecting the usage of calories and burning of fat.
Hormones have a very important role in bringing about a wide variety of bodily changes. The health and life of a woman is greatly influenced through the ovaries producing estrogelyn, androstenedione and progesterone. These hormones are important for high metabolism, fertility and temperature control besides contributing to several other functions in the body.
Hysterectomy weight gain is likely to be an outcome of decreased levels of hormone production. Since the ovaries are no longer functional, the hormonal levels are remarkably affected. Removal of ovaries also decreases blood supply to the pelvic area. This can cause an increase in stored belly fat (abdomen).
Lack of physical activity can lead to gain in weight in women and take a toll over health. It is proven that physical activity and exercising after hysterectomy not only help in staying fit but also improve health and mental state. Through exercising, you can reduce calories and enhance mood by helping the brain release endorphins (natural chemicals which relieve pain).
The recovery period after surgery (four to eight weeks) may also restrict physical activity severely. This can cause reduced metabolism and lead to weight gain. Improper diet can also cause weight gain. Cutting on portion can help manage weight post surgery.