The run up to a hysterectomy for severe PMS / PMDD – general advice

Great to have found your website and to see that you are helping us by answering our questions. Thank you!. At first I thought that there were no blogs after about Feb this year………….but having found my way around the site I found a November message reply. Most importantly you say you are now enjoying life which is great news – and really all I want to do. I’ve recently been to see Professor Studd, have a 30 year history of misdiagnosed PMDD. Was treated for years for Bipolar, but never improved. Am on the HRT from John Studd like you were, gels originally now just had an implant fitted by him. He has said a hysterectomy is the best treatment for me which i think I will go ahead with,. I am currently feeling really bad on the hormones, and am frightened as i have just started the 7 days of progesterone, which the last (and first) time I took them made me feel really bad and then the mood just hasn’t shifted. Can’t imagine feeling much worse than I am now. I am 47 and perimenopausal so that probably isn’t helping as it seems symptoms can deteriorate during this time. This whole thing is just so all-consuming, have you any advice for me in the run-up to the hysterectomy – it’s a confusing time, particularly as I have low mood and all the brain-altering negativity that comes with it. Did you say it was about 6 months from when you saw Prof Studd to when you had your op? Thank you!

Hi there, I’m sorry you’re feeling awful, I feel for you. I don’t post much these days as I’m moving on (and PMDD now seems like a distant bad dream!), but I am here and am glad I can help a little by answering questions.

Here’s the timeline of how long the process took for me. Eventually I refused to take any progesterone as it took me so long to shake off the ensuing depression.

My advice for the run up to the hysterectomy is:

  • Write down the pros and cons of the operation for you, refer back to it during moments of doubt and confusion.
  • Write down ALL your feelings – writing helped me a great deal!
  • Try to enlist the support of a good friend or relative who knows just how much PMDD has affected you.
  • Read the excellent book ‘The Essential Guide to Hysterectomy‘ by Lauren F Streicher.
  • Another book which I found very comforting is ‘Overcoming Depression‘ by Paul Gilbert.
  • Do your pelvic floor exercises.
  • If you are overweight, try to lose weight before the operation.
  • Do not do internet research on hysterectomies at night or when you are feeling your worst – there are a number of sensationalist, scaremongering anti-op sites out there.
  • I will send you a PM about an online group I’m a member of, for women who have had or are considering a hysterectomy for PMDD – it’s a tremendous comfort and extremely useful.

I wish you the very best of luck with your treatment!