Triathlon Training After Hysterectomy

author : AMSSM
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BT Member Question:

Just wondering if anyone out there has had an open abdominal radical hysterectomy and how long did it take to start running, swimming or biking after?

Answer by Rachel Biber Brewer, MD
Member AMSSM:

Returning to activity after open abdominal hysterectomy:

While no surgery is "minor," an open abdominal hysterectomy has a relatively longer recovery period compared to other procedures, especially in comparison to a laparoscopic or vaginal hysterectomy. In general, it takes six weeks to return to normal everyday activities, and can take longer if complications (eg. wound infection) occur.

Once your gynecologist clears you to return to exercise (usually at around six to eight weeks), it is important to take a gradual, stepwise approach back to fitness. Building your core is an important component of your recovery period post-hysterectomy and should be the focus prior to increasing your training load with swimming, biking, or running. Such exercises include pelvic tilts and abdominal strengthening exercises like standard or ball crunches. Yoga and pilates are also excellent modes of core strengthening. Avoid heavy lifting during your initial phase of core strengthening.

Once you have regained your core strength, focus on building an aerobic base with swimming, biking, and running. Gradually increase your time in the three sports, and don't rush back to the same training volume that you were at pre-surgery. A gradual increase in intensity is also important to avoid injury and fatigue. And of course, listen to your body – if you experience any abdominal pain, vaginal bleeding, or other concerning symptoms, consult with your gynecologist.

Rachel Biber Brewer, MD

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date: November 21, 2011

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AMSSM

The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) was formed in 1991 to fill a void that has existed in sports medicine from its earliest beginnings. The founders most recognized and expert sports medicine specialists realized that while there are several physician organizations which support sports medicine, there has not been a forum specific for primary care non-surgical sports medicine physicians.

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avatarAMSSM

The American Medical Society for Sports Medicine (AMSSM) was formed in 1991 to fill a void that has existed in sports medicine from its earliest beginnings. The founders most recognized and expert sports medicine specialists realized that while there are several physician organizations which support sports medicine, there has not been a forum specific for primary care non-surgical sports medicine physicians.

FIND A SPORTS MEDICINE DOCTOR

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