Novasure...was it the right thing to do??? Part 1...

Jan 13, 2007

The Bottom Line Novasure - take control over your body and life again! The alternative to hysterectomies.

*Some of the following information may be too detailed for some people, but I can’t tell the story, w/out saying what I have to say*

I feel that I am a pretty healthy 31 year old female. I am a mother of 4 beautiful children, and carried those to full term with no problems. Even after suffering my miscarriage in 94’, I was still able to have very healthy pregnancies, so I would honestly say I am “female” healthy. I’ve had a few bad pap tests, endured a colposcopy back in 02 which everything came back normal…..then I became pregnant with my 4th and final child. My periods were pretty much on schedule up until then. After having my youngest child though everything changed. All of a sudden, I never knew when I was going to start, or when I was going to stop (after 16 years of knowing your body’s schedule, man what a shock!) It was even embarrassing as a lot of you women can relate to. Nothing compares to carrying around a purse full of maxi pads and tampons all month long!!! Geesh!

Then about a year ago (my youngest is 3 years old), I started having severe cramping every month right before and during my cycle. I mean cramping beyond anything I had ever had. The cramps were so strong and horrific, I could hardly walk or move or even get out of bed some mornings. Being a mother of 4 kids and a husband who drives a truck, I had no choice but to work through that pain for about 3 days each month. I had enough when it got to the point, I was taking my anger at this problem out on my family. I found myself griping at my children for no reason. PMS was nothing compared to what I was putting my family through. It was time to talk to my gynecologist about this problem. I was sick and tired of not having any control over my body anymore.

When I explained my problems to my doctor, she was very helpful in a few options I had available. Since I pretty much had a healthy uterus she did not recommend a hysterectomy. I wasn’t opt for that type of surgery anyways. She explained to me that she could put me on birth control pills, a very small dosage, to get my cycle back on track. But of course the cramping she said would have to be controlled by a pain pill. This pain pill she offered had to be taken 3 – 4 days before your cycle starts. I had a few issues with these options due to the fact I never knew when I was starting for sure, and I had a bad experience with birth control pills once. So she gave me another option called Novasure and she gave me a pamphlet on it. The doctor told me this is a fairly new procedure started back in 2003. I was told to read thru the pamphlet and if I had any questions to call her nurse anytime. If I wanted the procedure done, then they would have to do some testing to see if I was “healthy” to proceed.

Novasure is an outpatient procedure done in hospitals and only a few doctors do this. NovaSure Endometrial Ablation is the quick, safe and simple, one-time procedure with no hormones and no hysterectomy. Even though I didn’t have tremendous heavy periods, my doctor said this procedure helps with pain & suffering , PMS symptoms, and may even cause periods to reduce in duration or even stop completely.

I was ready to try anything and since it was outpatient with hardly any healing time (unlike hysterectomies) I called and set up my appointment with my doctor’s nurse to begin the testing.

After having my yearly exam, the doctor set up an ultrasound to check for tumors and/or any other abnormalties. I had these tests done about 5 days prior to my scheduled surgery. The dr also done a biopsy of some sort, but at this time I don't remember what it was called. It was to measure the uterus and check for any uterus abnormalties. My ultrasound and biopsy came back clean and I was ready to go! The doctor went over all my prior instructions before and after surgery. I was informed that the healing process is different for every woman but much easier than from a hysterectomy. Usually you can return back to work or normal activities with in 2 days. I had 2 prescriptions to fill before the day of my surgery. One was an antibiotic to take for 5 days after surgery and then of course a pain pill called Percocet. The doctor said some women say they had the worse pain ever after this, and yet others say it was nothing at all. My doctor was very thorough on the pros and cons of this procedure. Pros being, less painful less bleeding during periods (some women have reported having no periods at all after Novasaure.) Cons being during the surgery complications can arrise like the uterus being ruptured, infection, pregnancy complication and gas embolism. It is STRONGLY recommended women who have Novasure do NOT become pregnant. This procedure is NOT a birth control.

She explained to me what she would be doing while I was asleep. First they would fill my uterus up with a fluid and do measurements and check for polyps. This is called (and sorry if misspelled) Hysteroscopy. Then they do a simple procedure called D & C which basically they scrape the uterus lining to clean it out. I know that sounds kinda gross, but hey? gotta do what ya gotta do. And last but not least they do the Novasure procedure which is a laser removal of the uterus lining.

The night before surgery of course, since they would be putting me completely out during the procedure, I couldn't eat or drink after midnight. No problem except I am a caffeine freak!!! But I somehow managed just fine.

The next morning I arrived at the hospital at my scheduled time for being there. They promptly got me back into a "waiting" room in Outpatient Surgery and had me give a urine sample (to check for pregnancy), and dress in one of those lovely gowns. My husband was with me of course, because I had to have a designated driver from being under anesthesia. I had my talk with the anesthesia guy and the nurse started my wonderful I.V. I was ready to go...and yet very nervous. I said goodbye to my husband and was on my way to the "holding room" (I love the names they give the rooms..haha.)

Back in the holding room, I was given an IV antibiotic for the surgery, I was given Pepcid since I had an empty stomach, and then I was given a sedative. As the nurse called it a "I don't give a damn" medicine. She had a great sense of humor!

I don't remember a whole lot in the surgery room other than being talked to by the nurses and the anesthesia guy. When I woke up in the "recovery room" of course I was groggy, but knew where I was and knew I was done. I would say I was in the surgery for almost an hour and in the recovery room for about 30 minutes.

I had no pain what so ever when I finally was back to normal state of mind. I had very minimal cramping. My doctor saw me before I left the hospital and said that everything went well and she would see me in 2 months for a checkup. She told me the nurse would go over my instructions on after care. I was at the hospital from 8:15 a.m. and left around 1 p.m.

After care is pretty me it was just using common sense. The first day of the surgery you can not make any important decisions and/or sign any important documents due to being under anesthesia. You have to rest, not bed rest, but do take it easy for the remainder of the day. Take prescriptions as prescribed by the doctor. No baths for 2 weeks or initial bleeding has stopped (but may shower after the day of surgery), No sex for 2 weeks, No using tampons or douching for 2 weeks. No steps for atleast 2 days and can return to work and normal activities when feeling up to it but not sooner than 2 days.

I did as my doctor said of course, as I said earlier, being a stay at home mom with a husband who drives a truck, it was really hard but I managed so far. I'm on my 3rd day after surgery and feel great other than being bloated and minor cramping here and there. I had no major pains or discomfort and hardly any bleeding at all. I have only had to take 3 pain pills since the surgery. I'm anxious to see how well I feel when next month comes around and if I'll even get a period, but my main concern is the pain I was having before and to see if that has stopped.

I started this "review" to let women know that there are other options out there for painful heavy menstrual cycles and they should talk to their doctors about it. Of course with every procedure there are risks involved, but I'm looking forward to a life with out pain if I can prevent it. I will write more on this review as I discover what my body is up to. Please don't hesitate to talk to your doctor about Novasure. It may just be the answer you are looking for. It may be a simple surgical way to take control over your body again or at least that is what I'm hoping for.

Please check out the website for real demonstrations on how this procedure is done and doctor/patient testimonials @ and more detailed information on the pros and cons. My review is on how it's helped or not helped me as I will talk more about this when I know more. Thank you for reading and hopefully this has helped women out there in some way and give them some hope.
Until next time.....

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