Safeguarding your recovery: Minimising the risks of postoperative hysterectomy complications

Undergoing a hysterectomy is a significant surgical procedure that can bring about transformative changes in a woman's life. As a high-volume surgeon, I see the benefits of hysterectomy regularly and they are often substantial. However, it's crucial to be mindful of potential postoperative complications, such as infections and blood clots. While my practice and I do everything in our power to minimise those risks, in this blog, we will explore actionable steps for patients to minimise these risks and contribute to a smooth recovery after a hysterectomy.

Follow preoperative instructions:

The journey to a successful recovery begins before the surgery itself. Adhering to preoperative instructions provided by your healthcare team is the first line of defence against complications. This may include physical activity before surgery, proper hygiene measures, stopping any incompatible medication (blood thinners, anti-diabetic medication) or other specific preparations outlined by the Dr Obermair team.

Optimise overall health:obermair images 2

Prioritise your overall health leading up to the surgery. Maintain a balanced diet, engage in regular physical activity (as approved by your healthcare provider), and manage any chronic conditions such as diabetes or hypertension through your family doctor or regular physician. Try to get enough sleep prior to surgery. Avoid coming to theatre totally exhausted.

Quit smoking:

If you smoke, consider quitting before the surgery. Smoking has been linked to a range of complications, including impaired circulation, delayed wound healing, and an increased risk of blood clot formation. Taking this step can significantly enhance your postoperative recovery.

Stay active postoperatively:

As soon as your healthcare team approves, engage in light physical activity, such as moving arms and shoulders, breathing exercises or walking. Movement is a powerful ally in preventing blood clots and promoting circulation. Regular, gentle activity can also aid in preventing postoperative complications.

Proper wound care:

The incision site requires careful attention. Follow your healthcare provider's instructions for wound care meticulously. Keep the area clean and dry, and report any signs of infection, such as redness, swelling, or unusual discharge. A well-cared-for incision is less likely to become a source of complications. Any concerns, please take a picture and email it to us.

Take prophylactic medications:

We may prescribe pain killers, prophylactic antibiotics or blood-thinning medications to reduce the risk of infections and blood clots. I also recommend laxatives and fresh juices (double pulp orange juice) to get your bowels moving. It's important to take these medications precisely as directed to ensure their effectiveness in preventing complications.

Stay hydrated:

Proper hydration is essential for overall wellbeing and can play a role in preventing blood clots. Ensure you are drinking an adequate amount of fluids, but avoid drinking large amounts of pure water. You can add electrolytes into water to avoid water intoxication.

Monitor for signs of complications:

Vigilance is key during the recovery process. Be watchful for signs of potential complications, such as fever, persistent pain, or shortness of breath. Promptly report any concerning symptoms to your healthcare team for thorough evaluation and timely intervention. All our patients are given an after-hours phone number that responds 24/7 on all days of the year.

Compression stockings:

Depending on your health profile and medical history, your healthcare provider may recommend the use of compression stockings. These stockings promote healthy blood circulation, reducing the risk of blood clots, especially if you have a history of clotting disorders or anticipate prolonged periods of immobility during recovery. You can remove them, once you are fully mobile again.

Follow-up appointments:

Attend scheduled follow-up appointments. These visits are not just routine; they are opportunities for your healthcare team to monitor your recovery progress, identify any potential issues early on, and discuss aftercare as needed.


Minimising the risks of postoperative complications after a hysterectomy is super important to me as your surgeon and requires a collaborative effort between you and the Dr Obermair Team. By actively participating in your recovery, following medical advice, and promptly addressing any concerns, you can contribute to a smoother recuperation process.

If you wish to receive regular information, resources, reassurance and inspiration for up-to-date care that is safe and sound and in line with the latest research, please subscribe to my blog via the form above, or like Dr Andreas Obermair on Facebook.

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