What happens before and during robotic assisted hysterectomy?

Before the procedure

Before your surgery, your doctor will perform a physical exam, order blood and urine tests and may order other tests to check your general health. Your doctor will tell you which of your current medications can continue to be taken and which will need to be temporarily stopped before surgery. You will be given instructions on when to stop eating and drinking the evening before and morning of your surgery. Your surgeon will explain the procedure in detail, including possible complications and side effects. He or she will also answer your questions.

On the day of surgery:

  • A urinary catheter may be inserted to empty your bladder
  • Your abdominal area will be cleaned with a sterile solution
  • An intravenous (IV) line will be placed in a vein in your arm to deliver medications and fluids

During the procedure

After receiving anesthesia, your surgeon will make four or five small surgical cuts (incisions) in your abdomen (belly). The thin surgical instruments and tiny lighted camera attached to the arms of the surgical robot are inserted into the abdomen through these incisions.

The surgeon controls the precise movement of the robotic arms, surgical instruments and camera while seated at a computer console. Members of the surgical team stand next to the operating table to change the robotic instruments and provide other assistance to the surgeon as needed.

Your surgeon typically removes the uterus through the vagina, like when delivering a baby. In certain cases, the uterus is removed through the small incisions in your abdomen.

An anesthesiologist monitors your anesthesia and vital signs throughout your operation.

How long does robotic assisted hysterectomy take to complete?

Robotic assisted hysterectomy typically takes between one to four hours to complete, depending upon the surgeon and the complexity of the case.

What’s the typical recovery time with robotic assisted hysterectomy?

Robotic hysterectomy is an outpatient procedure. You may stay in the hospital overnight but some woman can be released the same day of surgery. You will able return to light regular activities the next day (walking, eating, walking up stairs). You can drive in about a week or less at the discretion of your physician and return to exercising in about four to six weeks. Your doctor will review your progress and tell you when you can return to your normal activities.

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