How are you preparing for your fibroid treatment?

Your preparation can be spiritual, or funny, or just ways you are pampering yourself. Name your treatment option and tell what you are doing to prepare.

How are you preparing for your fibroid treatment?

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Related Posts:
What should I carry with me to the hospital before my fibroid surgery?
What’s involved with pre-op testing before a fibroid procedure?

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37 Responses to “How are you preparing for your fibroid treatment?”

  1. Tina (1/24) Says:

    Yes, I did all the running around and had lists as long as my arm for me and dh. But I think the most important thing I did that one week before I went in for the AM was I called people. I touched base with family and friends who I had not spoken with for a while. Not to tell them I was going in for surgery but to catch up on them and what was going on in their lives. I really needed to get the focus off of me cause the upcoming event felt all consuming. I made lunch dates and dinner dates with as many people as dh and I could fit in. And, most important for me, even with my emotions running so high, I made every effort to keep the peace at home.

  2. LR Says:

    Any advise for the day OF surgery? I am really nervous about it all… But I guess as EG said, we will all be incredibly nervous until we go through it and no amount of words will make it go away. Yet any advise or words of wisdom will be much appreciated… you know, I’ve had minor surgeries before and I never cared much leading up to it… I think it’s the time I’ve had to build this up that has me so freaked. That and the fact that they are cutting me wide open.

  3. bh Says:

    bring a book!!!! i had to be here at 10. they said my surgery was going to be at 12:00 but now its 2. i was warned this could happen. so be sure you wear something comfortable and bring a book. i have even seen people here with personal dvd players…that’s a bit much. don’t worry LR the waiting will mellow you out 🙂 BH

  4. Tina (1/24) Says:

    LR,
    Just breathe.
    Close your eyes and just breathe.
    Give in to the process.
    Don’t fight it. Go with it. You’re almost there.
    You’ll do great!

    There was another thing that dh and I did during those couple of days before surgery: we would go on youtube every night that week prior to surgery right around 8ish and do a search for anything involving the words ‘animals’ and ‘funny’. Then we would spend over an hour laughing and rolling on the floor absolutely hysterical. On one night we searched for all the 80s music we grew up with and loved – Echo and the Bunnymen, Madness, PIL…- and we danced and sang our hearts out. It was just perfect.

  5. BL Says:

    Hello ladies,

    LR, I agree with everything that was posted. You will be fine, I posted in the Part 3 section of “How are you feeling after your AM”. BH is right bring a book, or other reading materials. They took me in on time because I was the first, I needed a lot of work done so that’s why Dr. AW was running behind…Sorry BH, I didn’t even get a chance to meet you. The process seems to go quickly, however it is long for those of your family members who are waiting for you. Eat a lite dinner. On Sunday, I just had some raisin bran cereal and a banana and that was at 7:30 PM. I was starving on the day of surgery but I figured I should be. I didn’t do a bowel prep. Get your list together and make your phone calls!

    Take care and good luck tomorrow 🙂

    BL

  6. fibroid free Says:

    I prepared for my fibroid treatment by trying to be prepared. Understanding what was going to happen (step by step ) helped me not have the “what if and whats happening or what should happen now syndrome” . I asked the doc to tell me REALLY what to expect the day of surgery and it went pretty much like he said.

    I was prepared in my doctors appointmet..asking a lot of question to satify anything on my (worried) mind and if I didnt understand..I asked again

    I treid to just do “other stuff’ before hand ..not to focus so much on surgery and all….gald I did…you can only prepare so much and worry to much…so I did alot of what Tina did breath…..

  7. Sophia Says:

    I only had four days notice before the surgery date, but what I did was have lists all over the house. Anything that I touched, that was not perishable went on the list.

    If you have pets, stock-up on six weeks of food, that’s one of the last things you want to run out of, and dog food can be heavy.

    I went to Walmart with my lists, and it took two trips to the car, and $400.00 later I was stocked up. Let me tell you, it was the best thing I could have done for myself. I live alone, and even though I knew I would be able to drive after four weeks, I imagined myself trying to drag bags into the house, and that did it for me.

    I stocked up on hair products, paper products, canned goods and frozen foods. My best Walmart purchase was my heating pad. I picked up two six-packs of fruit of the loom high waisted underwear, one size to big. I hit clearance racks for big comfy pjs, and I really picked up some great stuff. I was getting pj pants for $2.00 a pair.

    At home I rearranged my bathroom a little bit. I cleared out a shelf in the laundry closet, at waist length, and moved everything that was under the sink, which I would bend over to get, to the shelf. I picked up a small trash can, and liners, so that my trash was little bags, not the normal kitchen size.

    I had a TAH, and all my preparations really paid off. I live alone, and although I had visitors, it was nice to ask them to pick-up milk and bread, and not have to make extensive lists. Oh, stock-up on yogurt, the kind with the bacteria’s for intestinal regularity, the really help to get everything back on track.

    Good luck!

  8. Tabitha Says:

    I’m reading everything I can to prepare myself for UAE. I’m pretty confident that it’s for me, from the research I’ve done on my own. I have a doctor’s appt. on 4/16 and I’m going to tell him it’s a “go”. I saw the procedure done in the on-line video that this site referred me to. It makes me nervous, but I can do this.

    I’m wondering what level of pain there will be. I have already experienced the pain of an ovarian cyst rupturing. I also have experienced the pain of a degenerating fibroid (that’s when part of the blood supply to the fibroid is cut off and the fibroid starts to die. Part of it anyway. I don’t know if completely). The pain is extremely intense. That’s the kind of pain it sounds like everyone is talking about after UAE.

    What do you think?

  9. Jen Says:

    I see that’s it’s been a while since anyone posted on this topic, but I going to send out a message in cyber space to see if I can get support from people who actually know what I’m going through. I am having an AM next week and am very, very nervous. I am 29 and have never had surgery before. I think I am mostly concerned about the recovery process, such as how much pain I will be in, how long I should expect to feel funky, and how my lifestyle may be different than it is now. I am a teacher, so thankfully I will have a while to recover, but I am still freaking out. Any experiences you all could share would be greatly appreciated.

  10. SPF Says:

    Hi Jen,
    I am having an ab-myo next Tuesday June 5. I am 43, so a bit older than you, but this is also my first surgery and first time in the hospital. I have been really busy at work this week preparing for my disability period and I think that has been a good distraction. I think as far as lifestyle, from what I have read on this site, be prepared to be tired… take naps during the day when you need them. Have someone to help you at the begiining. When I went for my pre-op testing, the nurse mentioned I would be a bit swollen afterwards so I’m going to pick up some big baggy shorts this weekend. Someone suggested I borrow some maternity clothes. I am a bit worried about sitting around and eating all day and not being able to exercise – and therefore putting on some weight. and honestly, I am just trying not to think about the pain. I know the first week will probably be bad, but I am looking forward to being fibroid free in the future. Good luck to you!

  11. Jen Says:

    Thanks for the email! My surgery is the day after yours, so I will be thinking about you!

    I went out this week and bought a lot of baggy pj’s–capris with drawstring waists–so hopefully I’ll be comfortable. I am also worried about gaining weight, but I guess the only thing I can do is try to minimize it by eating as healthily as possible while I”m recovering. I am guessing that should be best for my body anyway.

    The maternity clothes are a good suggestion, and I definitely have someone to help. My mom will be here for about three weeks to help me when my husband is at work.

    Thanks for the suggestions and good luck to you too!

  12. Sassyjonz - ATL Says:

    I am 6 weeks pre-op and stumbled onto this site during my research into the surgery. I am 44…and after 3 years of not having been to the doctor because of no insurance, I was told I have a huge (10.4×10.5x10cm) fibroid and needed a hysterectomy. I was shocked and devastated to hear this. I had been having many problems, yes…severe cramping and pelvic pain, passing horrible clots during my cycle, and discharge of disgusting stuff I won’t mention and darn near hemmoraging on the first couple of days of my period, not to mention menstrual migraines that made me want to shoot myself. But I had never ever been diagnosed with fibroids. Had someone missed something or do they just grow that big in 3 years? I guess as women, we kind of get used to these discomforts and don’t realize just how much they affect and downgrade our quality of life.

    Anyway, I felt way too young to have a hysterectomy and I have had no children. Now, I know you are saying that I am a bit long in the tooth to be thinking along those lines at 44. And being that I am not married and don’t have a boyfriend and time is a factor, these were all things I had to consider in making my decision. My first doctor, although an excellent surgeon, was stuck in his non-invasive, quick healing mind set and basically refused to do a myo. He said there would be too many complications and that I wouldn’t heal because of my size. I sought a second and then a 3rd opinion from the surgeon who will perform my AM next month.

    She told me that I could do what I wanted…what I felt was right for me and my situation. So even if I am too old to have a child, I did not want my choice taken away. I knew I would regret that.

    Anyway, when my surgery date was finally set, I felt a bit aprehensive. I’ve had outpatient surgery before which ended up as an overnight stay but that was it so this is a big deal. I find that research is the best weapon and ally for anything so I immediatly started Googling.

    I’ve been reading the posts on this site for 2 days straight and incredibly, the majority of my questions have been addressed. Thank you all for being so candid. The pre-op, hospital and recovery tips are priceless to those of us facing this journey.

    • Jennifer Says:

      Thank you for your post. This morning I schedule LM for the 21DEC. I came across this site in preparation for surgery. I am 37, with a 13cm fibroid. One doctor was pretty insistent on hysterectomy, however I sought out a few other opinions.

      It has been helpful to read your post because I am not married, I am single, but I am not ready to let my reproductive organs go.

      I hope all went well for you.
      Sincerely, Jennifer

  13. lou Says:

    Hi, just wondering if there’s anyone out there having a myo soon? I’m having mine on Nov 5th with Dr. Ascher-Walsh. I’m getting nervous but I’m also looking forward to it. I’m having my last period (a heavy one!) before the surgery and hopefully things will be better after the fibroids are gone. I think I’m ready!

  14. Melba Says:

    “Had someone missed something or do they just grow that big in 3 years? ”

    It doesn’t even take three years! I went from none detectable to a 7cm one in less than three months. Though I do agree with you about the getting used to the discomforts–it’s amazing what we put up with once you look back on it!

  15. tk08 Says:

    I am having AM next month. I am anxiously awaiting for the nurse to call me back. She said that we would let me know before the end of the day. Well, it’s 4:00 and I haven’t heard anything..so I guess I will just have to wait and see. I watched a live laparscopic surgery online with the Da Vinci machines. It is amazing what technology can do. I have been trying to find a live AM online but haven’t found one.

    Good luck to all ladies who having upcoming AMs.

  16. jennyc Says:

    Hi there,

    This website has been really helpful, but also started me thinking about a whole lot of things I hadn’t even considered…

    I am scheduled to have my surgery next week at NY/Pres and after reading all of this I must admit i’m freaked out. I’m very athletic- work out 5-6 times a week, but I’m worried about the Muffintop and being swollen. I too will need to get back to work after about 2 weeks and I’m also worried that I will be miserable for Christmas! Supposed to be going to a wedding in texas, December 29- will I look and feel horrible???

    Also my boyfriend and I were planning a beach vacation in January- looks like that will be a bad idea.

    I’ve heard only great things about my Dr. -Dr. Bartish. Anyone have any words of wisdom for me????

  17. Melba Says:

    “How are you preparing for your fibroid treatment?”
    I’m preparing for an AM. No, let me be more precise and quote from the confirmation letter I just got from the doctor’s office. On December 17th I’m going in for “Hysteroscopy, Laparoscopy, Possible Laparotomy & Myomectomy”. What this means is that the doctor will do the scopes and see if he will do the surgery locally or send me to a specialist out of town.
    So I’m preparing in two ways:
    a) Mental preparation to wake up and find out that they did nothing. Trying not to set myself up for disappointment.
    b) Practical preparation for the 2-6 weeks of recovery following the AM. Lots of things to square away at work. Get the house cleaned. Make sure holiday packages are sent off (should get that done early anyway). Planning for last minute shopping, groceries and a massive at-home over-the-counter pharmacy so that I’m prepared for all contingencies. This site has been quite a gem in helping me to put together a pre-surgery shopping list. I live 25 miles from the nearest store, so there’s no way to get anything quick and easy that I might find myself lacking during recovery.

    Oh, and one thing I did was a few things to fix up our spare bedroom, because I imagine I’ll be spending a lot of time in bed, and might like a change of scenery. So I made the extra bedroom a more pleasant location–cleared out clutter, dusted, invested in a mattress topper and new window blind.

    I did watch the AM video through OR-live. I sort of regretted it at first, because the surgeon seemed to handle the uterus she was working on like it was a ham at the butcher shop, with fat and gristle to be removed. I though, holy crap, just being handled like that would be a doozy to recover from! But I realized that her “rough” treatment of the uterus was probably due to confidene and expertise, and knowing how to do things efficiently. And it made me appreciate my own doctor’s approach, which is very cautious (will not remove the fibroid if it’s deeply embedded) and, I suspect, much more gentle than in the video.

    I’ve been writing and re-writing my list of questions for the pre-op visit.

    My new strategy is from today on, the LAST thing I’ll do while online at night is browse photos of beautiful vacation locations. I made the mistake last night of reading away on this site and then jumping right in bed. Not easy to fall asleep when my head is full of fibroid treatment thoughts! So, I need to put some nice images in my head before hitting the sack. Tahiti, anyone?

  18. Kate Says:

    Hi,
    I’m extremely nervous. I have my surgery in 2 weeks and I’m worried that I will be in soooo much pain. I’m beginning to question having the am at all and just waiting butI was told that my fibroid will probrably keep growing until menopause. I have a 5cm fibroid and a few smaller ones and I had heavy periods for months. Also I spotted or had heavy bleeding everyday for two months and I’m slighly anemic. I don’t think I want children but was told that UFE was an optio if I was sure that I didn’t want kids. I’m very confused and I think I’m just having second thoughts because I’m scared. Can anyone help me?

  19. Susan Says:

    Hey,
    I’m 28 and having a myomectomy next week. I’m really freaking out. On the one hand I’m happy to have found this site, it’s full of information, but on the other hand I’m reading some scary stuff… like Kate, I’m starting to have second thoughts. I know surgery is the logical thing to do but emotionally it’s very difficult for me. I’d appreciate any support from anyone who’s already gone through this… Thanks!

  20. salsera with fibroids Says:

    Hi Susan,
    I know it seems scary but it really is worth it and recovery isn’t as bad as you might think. I had an ab myo only 6 days ago and you really really do get better every single day. Its painful the first 2-3 days but its really not all that bad honest. The worst part for me is just not being able to do all the things you are used to doing. It is totally worth it though!
    Read the advice on this blog and be prepared, know what to expect and it really isn’t all that scary!!! Remember that some of the stories you hear will be from extreme cases and not everyone reacts the same to surgery and to pain. The younger you are the more chances are that your recovery will be smoother. I’m 25 and I’m recovering really fast compared to some of the others and I’m so grateful!

    Goodluck with your surgery and if you have any questions, anything at all don’t hestitate to ask!

    salsera (now fibroid free :))

  21. Michelle Says:

    I am doing a lot of research online. I had watched the surgery performed on OR Live. My AM is on the 27th of May and I’m ready to get it out of the way. My DH and I will take a trip this weekend to unwind before the procedure. I plan on doing a last minute cleaning of my house the day before (my DH doesn’t clean like I do).

  22. Swing Dancer Says:

    Hi Salsera,
    After your ab myo, how long was it before you could resume salsa dancing socially? If doctors think driving a car may involve difficult unexpected movements, just try social dancing! 😉
    Swing Dancer scheduled for ab myo

  23. Chavela Says:

    I’m just reading this site like crazy. My procedure is scheduled for 2/9. Any tips to help me calm down would be appreciated.

  24. Aja Says:

    Hi Chavela,

    Write down a list of everything that you have to remember to do on the day of the procedure. Write it out so that it is in the order that you have to do it and put all the stuff that you need to take – ID, keys, insurance card whatever – in one spot. This way, you can use the checklist to make sure you have everything. If there are other people helping you on that day, make sure they know where they have to be and when (and you can write that down too). You want to make sure that you don’t have to keep juggling plans in your head or having last minute thoughts like, “I can’t forget to let the cat out before I go!”

    When you are in pre-op, be sure to tell the orderlies that you are nervous and that you haven’t had surgery before so that they know. (Mine were really great.) And ask them if you have anything you’re concerned about.

    Finally, after you have all the arrangements made, breathe deeply and think about something else. It will all be fine.

  25. Chavela Says:

    Thanks AJA! I am on my way to being fibroid free!! Later on today is the day!!

  26. Aja Says:

    Hi Chavela,

    You go, girl! My thoughts and best wishes are with you for an easy (and effective) procedure and a swift recovery!

    Good luck!

  27. FIBROID FREE PLS Says:

    Hello All~
    I am scheduled to undergo an abdominal myomectomy on June 22nd with Dr. Ascher Walsh at Mt Sinai in NYC. I am 33 years old, no children and experiencing sharp pains at times and awful periods. I am EXTREMELY nervous about this surgery. I would love to opt on but one of my fibroids is pressing on my ureter ( tube that leads to your kidney) and Dr. Walsh was concerned about it growing and causing major problems in the future. First off, has anyone had surgery with him? I have heard that he is the best at what he does, fibroid removal. I have never had surgery and am terrified of going under, the pain, cathetar, hospital stay and most of all recovering and not being able to work out or live my life. Can any of you ladies give me some advice on how the surgery went and whether or not anyone has looked into a more holsitic approach that actually worked. I want children and have heard across the board that these grow back…but then I hear fibroids cause a lot of fertility issues and cause a lot of miscarriage.

    Desperately seeking friendly advice~
    A

    • Irene Says:

      Hi- Did you have your surgery w/ Dr. Ascher Walsh? How did it go? I am supposed to have surgery w/ him as well.

  28. Evmywnzo Says:

    GBizNG comment2 ,

  29. michelle Says:

    I had surgery a week ago and I am doing fine. I did it so I can have babies and not live my life around my period. I had a 6.5 cm fibroid that was shrunk down to 3.7 by using Lupron. Then I had it Laproscopically removed by Dr. John Chan in SF. I was scared too.

    My preop appointment at the hospital helped. The nurse explained to me that going under now days is so much more advanced. I think this part scared me the most. But they have a dedicated doctor constantly monitoring you during the operation so nothing will happen. And so much has advanced over the years.

    The first 48 hours are the hardest, but I was not in extreme pain or anything. They gave me a choice between vicodin (sp?) and morphine. I chose vicodin and I was fine.

    Things I did that I thought helped:
    1) Work out during the days before surgery. This helps with your overall recoevery – plus you will now use other musceles to compensate for the surgery.
    2) I stayed on a liquid diet for the first 24 hours after surgery then a semi liquid diet (ate oatmeal, soup, toast) for another 2 days before I ate a real meal. First, I had no appetite and second, it may hurt to have a bowel movement from what I was told. I took stool softeners with every meal. I didn’t have a bowel movement until the 6th day after surgery and it did not hurt.
    3) It will hurt to laugh and cough for the first few days – so don’t rent comedies to watch!
    4) Have someone with you for the first 3 day minimum. I couldn’t remember if I took my pain med or not – now I write it down. Plus you are limited in movement so you need someone to help.
    5) You need loose clothes that don’t hit at the belly button or are tight on your abdobmin. Buy some granny panties. At the hospital they will give you some so ask for extra.
    6) Make sure you are stocked on popsicles, broth, toast, oatmeal, juice, bread.
    7) You will probably have to pick up a perscription when you leave the hospital. Make sure you have some one to help you do this and you have your perscription card.
    8) When you start walking and taking short walks, you are going to want some light weight shoes to walk in. Tennis shoes seemed to heavy for me.

    Lastly, I was in a room with a woman who had survived cancer and had many other health problems. It made me feel like my surgery was so minor in the grand scheme of surgeries. Just remember, this type of surgery is done a lot. I had full confidence in my surgeon too. I wish I had not stressed myself out so much over everything. You are young and in good health. I am so glad I got it done. It was worth it!

  30. Amy Says:

    Michelle, I’m so glad you posted. I have wanted to get a recommendation for a doctor in SF who will do a lap myo! I saw the head of the Fibroid center at UCSF and she said I’m to old and she didn’t want to do it! (I’m 53 – grrr.) anyway, I’d like to look into Dr. Chan, but there seem to be several in
    SF. Please tell me if he is on Divisadero or Sacramento Streets…and/or send me an email about him if you like: amyduck (at) aol.com
    Thanks!
    Amy

  31. Amy Says:

    Yay!! FYI! Blog has been fixed!

  32. Ellie Says:

    I also just want to thank all the ladies for sharing all their candid thoughts. I feel like the more I read the calmer I become because knows everything A-Z helps me feel like I am in control even if I’m really not!

    I’m scheduled for an Abdominal Myomectomy for multiple fibroids the largest of which is 9cm. I’m doing this because it’s uncomfortable to sleep and I want babies in the near future. I’m also planning our wedding(date was set before we found out about the little monsters in my uterus) which helps to distract me time to time.

  33. Vive Says:

    I had an abdominal myomectomy on January 18th and am in the very early days of my recovery. I’ll post more on that in the AM thread.

    I wanted to suggest the CDs I used to prepare for surgery because they helped me immeasurably. My husband had to have heart surgery for a congenital condition last year and used the same CDs, to great effect. They’re called Successful Surgery by Belleruth Naparstek. I found them so useful, calming, centering in getting my psyche and body ready for surgery. I listened to both the guided visualizations and the affirmations for about a week before surgery. Then I asked the anesthesiologist to let me listen to the accompanying music during surgery, which they say is really calming for the body.

    All of this helped a lot, but I’ll say the most helpful piece was listening after the surgery, especially that first night in the hospital. The music was like a switch for me — put it on the earbuds and I’d calm and fall asleep. I can’t imagine getting by without it. It kept me focused on healing and on being positive in the midst of a very difficult time. For me, this was so important, and now I want to make sure people know of this option as they get ready for surgery.

    Good luck to everyone.

  34. Chupee W.G. Howe Says:

    I am having mine done tomorrow and I was scared but feel good now

  35. Snobfreelady Says:

    Hello Ladies, Thank you all so much for this blog and commenting on your experiences. I am having my surgery in 3 weeks, I am scared of the pain and recovery time, but most importantly I am happy to be fibroid free. The largest one is about 15X10cm and I look 5months pregnant. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to have surgery prior to now because of no insurance, so shoutout to the Affordable Health Care Act aka Obamacare for getting rid of the “pre-existing condition” issue.
    I am an avid exerciser, and I am hoping that will help with my recovery. Did anyone experience any weight loss post-op?. Anyway, I will continue to check this site for more updates and will update my progress after surgery as well.


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