Post Op Recovery

Hi there, I've just had a Radical Hysterectomy ( Inc Ovaries & Lymph node removal) for Stage 1B1 Cervical cancer where there were the 2 different types of cancer cells present. I hopefully get the biopsy results on Wendesday,  but the thing that is causing me the most distress is that I have to have a catheter in for at least another week. Just wondering what other people's experience of this has been, and has everything been OK in the peeing department once it was removed. As I didn't have any symptoms of the cancer I feel like l have gone from being a healthy 46 yr old to someone on HRT and worrying about bladder issues overnight!

Hi. I had s lot if bladder issues post op and wrote about them in my blog. Look at jan/feb/March 2014 posts. I know exactly how you feel about the catheter. It really got me down. Another lady posted on here just a few days ago about her catheter so you may want to try and find her post as there were z good few replies on there.

Any specific catheter questions feel free to ask me.

My bladder is now fine (ish) have urge incontinence sometimes but no catheter and no self catheterising. Good luck with your results and your recovery.

Hi I had some issues post hyst. I had my catheter in for 4 days and afterwards I could only pre out a few mls, and I needed to use my abdominal muscles to empty my bladder. I am now 9 months post op and my bladder is back to normal and empties fully. I think I need to go more often than before, but is hard to tell and I never really took much notice! I have no incontinence, just a little urgency when it is really full! Get well soon xxx

Hi, Read some of your blog, think we have a very similar sense if humour! People can't believe that with the ever present Cancer threat looming my main concern is having this annoying bag strapped to my leg for the next week. Sounds like you had a rubbish time, hoping I get off a bit easier. My bladder certainly seems to be working OK, and I'm massively amused by the fact that when I sit on the loo for bowel stuff I can see that my bladder goes into auto empty mode. Love that your cat appreciated the warmth provided. I have house rabbits who I have to lock out of the bedroom at the moment,  while these bags seem durable I doubt they'd be a match go bunny teeth!! 

Thanks for the get well wishes, I can't believe how good I feel after having the surgery....I guess the copious amount of drugs helps.  Good to hear that you were OK bladder wise afterwards. I've always been a "I need to pee, and I need to pee now" person (much to my husbands annoyance,  so I guess I'll just need to see how it goes. x

Hi there glad to hear you are coping so well after the op. I'm in a similar situation to you 1b1 cancer keyhole rad hyst and I'm 11 days post op. I too unfortunately still have my cathter in, I was initially only having it in for 7 days but after 7 days they trialled me without it and as much as i was passing urine my bladder wasn't emptying fully so just have to go back every 7 days and have another go. There confident it should be ok and i was informed beforehand that this isnt uncommon. Also this weekend I've had a leaking catheter which is because of an infection but I do have antibiotics now. I've also been really down about the catheter but at my last appt the nurse gave me a flip flow valve to use in the day instead of a leg bag and that has made things a lot more pleasant so maybe ask for one of them if it makes life easier. What I would say is when you go back to the hospital don't be disheartened if it has to go back in, I went with the attitude that it'll all be ok and I'd come away without it and when They told me I had to have it back in I was devastated, got me really down and it did my mental recovery not much good. 

I'll keep my fingers crossed for you though that it will soon be A distant memory and you get the results you want on Wednesday, I get mine on Friday !!

sending positive thoughts xx

Thanks for your comments, they are very helpful.  I'll try not to get my hopes up for getting it out next week them, and if I do its a massive bonus. It's odd isn't it with all we are going through at the moment that something like this causes the most grief! Feels like life has turned into one huge waiting game at the moment.... I wish you the very best of luck with your results on Friday.x

Hi Greta

I feel and know where you're coming from! I actually woke up from the general anaesthetic shouting, this catheter isn't in right, and tried to get up to go to the loo. Er..not exactly an option at the time two hours after abdominal surgery!

I had my catheter in for 16 days post op in the end - possibly the most uncomfortable part of the whole experience, although in hindsight, maybe it was just a distraction from the rest of it. I had real trouble with feeling like I needed to pee all the time, and actually getting up in the middle of the night to pee too. 

Most of it might well have been neurological, it's a hard pattern to break when your brain thinks/knows your bladder needs to 'go'! A lot of the sensation is undoubtedly from nerve damage during the op, and after the radical hyst the surgeon just wanted to give my bladder the best chance at healing! I ended up with a bladder infection in week two but managed (Somehow) to have the patience, mind-over-matter, whatever you will to see it through. Actually, despite my moaning calls to nurse/ward/gp they didn't want to over-ride the intention of the surgeon to keep it in. 

Long story the end I went back to the gynae ward for a dayfor the 'trial without catheter' and after 7 hours of carefully measured drinking of water, stress, and peeing on demand, everything is fine another 3 weeks later. 

I actually think maybe my bladder's patience has improved post-op. In the process of the hysterectomy, and all, I also lost my 'pet/grapefruit-sized' fibroid, which I reckon was causing bladder pressure before. 

I remember getting the 'lymph nodes are clear' call and apologising for whining about the cathether. 

Good luck with everything - patience, patience, patience. 



Hi there, thanks so much for sharing your experience! It sounds exactly the same as I'm going through, I hate the sensation that you need to pee but can't go as such. This is day 5 for me, and just when I think I'm getting used to it I have a shower/ go to the loo/ change the bag and the sensation starts up all over again. I also agree that it is probably a distraction for everything else. As I sit here today wondering if I will get the lymph node call I find myself feeling really pleased that after 2 hours the dreaded feeling is starting to fade!! Delighted that you got the all clear call☺

Fab news today, no residual cancer and lymph nodes clear!! Finally had a really good cry. I know only too well I have been very lucky.

Dr Inyang at Crosshouse Hospital and Dr Rhona Lindsey at Glasgow Royal Infirmary and all their staff have been absolute stars!!  Can't thank them enough.

Fantastic news! That's great. A good cry does the world of good too. X

Yeah, got the dreaded bladder infection now!!!!!! 


So sorry to hear what you're going through Greta :-( I can only reassure you that it does get easier, honest it does.

Be lucky


Thanks Tivoli! Think the antibiotics must be starting in kick in as i'm not feeling as bad now.  Still feel really nauseous for the first hour or so when I wake up,  but the drugs soon clear it. Countdown now on until Tuesday when I go back to hopefully get the catheter removed.  If anyone lives in the Glasgow area and hears a load screaming noise on Tuesday that will he me being told I have to keep it in longer!!  xx

Hi Greta

I'm in Edinburgh and didn't hear anything across the central belt - hope all went well today and the catheter (of DOOM ) is gone. Take care, enjoy wearing leggings now your leg bag is (hopefully) gone! 


Thanks Leila, yes pleased to report that the dreaded catheter is now a thing of the past! My bladder worked like a dream, I was only at the hospital for 3 hours. And yes,  I'm now sat here wearing leggings.

There was a lovely lady in the next bed to me yesterday who was on her second op and had had chemo.It totally brought it home to me how very very lucky I am. Sending much love & hugs to all you ladies still going through a rough time

Love from an eternally grateful Greta xxx