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Hysterectomy Can Boost Sexual Life

By: Brandon Arakaki

Date Posted: 2000-01-15

A recent scientific study in the United States revealed that many women with gynecological problems, who undergo a hysterectomy, have more and better sex after surgery. The researchers also suggested that the main reason for the renewed sexual appetite is perhaps because the women feel healthier and have less fear of becoming pregnant.

According to a Reuters report published in November 1999, the study of more than 1,100 women in Maryland, being tracked for a number of health issues, found that nearly 78 percent were sexually active a year after their hysterectomy. Before the surgery, fewer than 71 percent could admit that they were sexually active. However, after the surgery, fewer women reported painful intercourse or vaginal dryness and most said they had sex more often, their orgasms increased in frequency, and their overall libido improved.

Nevertheless, the report, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, warned that the findings should not be construed to mean that hysterectomy improves sexual functioning in healthy women. The report stressed that the majority of patients in the study had gynecological problems, and it was likely their problems with sexual function before surgery resulted from those disorders.

“Although there are many plausible mechanisms that could account for the observed improvements in each aspect of sexual functioning, it is also possible that women simply feel better after hysterectomy and that sexual functioning improves along with overall health status and quality of life,” wrote Julia Rhodes of the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore. “Freedom from vaginal bleeding and fear of pregnancy may also account for some of the observed improvements,” she added.

The operation known as hysterectomy is one of the most common surgical procedures in the United States. About half a million women undergo the removal of their uterus every year because of fibrous tumors, cancer, excessive menstrual bleeding and other problems. Previous studies had shown that many women were reluctant to have a hysterectomy, in spite of chronic, albeit benign, gynecological problems; most of them had worries that the procedure would hinder their sex lives.

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