A slight amount of discharge after a hysterectomy is normal, though anyone experiencing a large amount of discharge should consult a medical doctor right away. Light-colored fluid, clear liquid, and a small amount of brown spotting are all common side effects of a hysterectomy. Bright red discharge, urine that contains blood, and an excessive amount of bleeding are not normal side effects.
Directly following surgery, most women will experience a small amount of discharge. The general rule of thumb is not to be concerned with discharge after a hysterectomy unless more than one sanitary napkin is used throughout the course of one hour. If numerous sanitary napkins are needed in order to control bleeding, it is wise to speak with a medical doctor.
The type of hysterectomy that a woman goes through can also impact the amount of bleeding that one experiences. A partial hysterectomy is the removal of a portion of the upper uterus, while a total hysterectomy involves removing both the cervix and the uterus. A radical hysterectomy is the removal of the uterus, cervix, and a portion of the vagina. Women who have recently undergone a partial hysterectomy may experience a larger amount of discharge than those who have gone through a total or radical hysterectomy.
In addition to discharge, some women may experience a small amount of bleeding following surgery. Bleeding of this sort can occur due to surgical scars. Surgery-related bleeding should not continue for more than one week following a hysterectomy. All patients should be notified of an expected amount of bleeding prior to surgery.
While discharge after a hysterectomy may seem alarming, in most cases a small amount of discharge is normal. If a patient experiences a large amount of pain followed by discharge, this could be a sign of infection. It is also important that a patient does not exert herself too much following surgery, as this could cause surgical scars to swell and ooze.
In some instances, discharge may occur many years after a hysterectomy. While this is common, speaking with a medical doctor about any unusual discharge after a hysterectomy is a wise idea. Every woman's body reacts different to surgery, though speaking with an expert about discharge is never a bad idea. A hysterectomy can be a scary experience, though understanding will help provide peace of mind.