Words what I have learned…

Really short one, this.

Thought I’d provide a summary of the words I have learned as I’ve undertaken my hysterectoME journey. I’ll put links to images, but beware, these are medical terms and they are images!

Please remember that I’m a patient, not a doctor. These are simply googled images and explanations in my own words.

  • TAH & BSO: Total Abdominal Hystectomy  & Bilateral Salpingo Oophrectomy (removal of womb, cervix, fallopian tubes and ovaries – what I’ve had)
  • TLH: Total Laparoscopic (small incisions in abdomen)
  • SAH: Subtotal (Supracervical in USA?): Cervix/ovaries.tubes left behind
  • TVH: Total Vaginal Hysterectomy: what it says on the tin
  • surgical menopause: after removal of ovaries, body instantly stops producing oestrogen so instant menopause symptoms
  • granulation tissue: new connective tissue & blood vessels; normal part of healing process; helps wounds to heal from the base of a wound (seems good on the outside, but not on the inside, not sure why but I have it where my cervix was and it’s slowing down my healing there???)
  • slough/sloughy wound: basically, ‘gunk’ in an open wound; usually a sign of bacterial action/infection (includes pus, which I learned isn’t always yellow!)
  • debridement (pretty unpleasant – don’t do an image search for this one unless you have a firm constitution!): removal of dead or infected tissue, often with hydrogel; can be done surgically in extreme cases; it’s what they sometimes use maggots for (luckily I got the hydrogel!)
  • dehiscence/dehisce (another one to not search for): surgical complication where a wound opens up; can be partial (top layers of skin – what I had) or total/evisceration (right down to organs)
  • exudate: protein rich fluid that comes out of a wound, natural  part of healing process; think it can be a sign of infection depending on amount, colour etc. (it was certainly monitored while my wound was infected and while it was healing)

This is probably only of interest to anyone who’s had or having surgery – or anyone who’s particularly gross!

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