Hysterectomy is a common surgical procedure but often leaves many women feeling a little lost and uncertain about their recovery journey, especially when it comes to ensuring that their pelvic floor health is maintained. However, pelvic floor expert Michelle Kenway has a wealth of knowledge and expertise surrounding hysterectomy recovery and has created comprehensive guidelines to help you regain pelvic floor strength and confidence post-surgery. In this article, we will delve into Michelle Kenway's hysterectomy advice, providing you with the essential information to support your recovery journey and ensure optimal pelvic floor health.
Michelle Kenway is a renowned Australian physiotherapist with over 20 years of experience, focusing on women’s health concerns, including the pelvic floor. With her specialized knowledge, she has laid out practical advice for women who have undergone a hysterectomy.
1. Understand the Types of Hysterectomy: First and foremost, it's essential for women to understand the type of procedure they have undergone, as this will influence their recovery process. There are three primary kinds of hysterectomy: total, subtotal, and radical. The total hysterectomy removes both the uterus and the cervix, the subtotal only removes the uterus, and the radical is performed on cancer patients where surrounding tissues are also removed. The more extensive the surgery, the longer the recovery process might be. However, Kenway’s pelvic floor recovery advice caters to all three types.
2. Take Recovery Time Seriously: Once you've had a hysterectomy, it is vital to take the necessary time to heal properly. Michelle Kenway emphasizes that women must not rush their recovery and get back into intense exercise or daily activities too quickly. The general recovery time is estimated at six weeks, but every woman's situation is unique, and they should seek medical guidance when returning to exercise.
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3. Gradual Pelvic Floor Muscle Training: Kenway recommends beginning gentle pelvic floor muscle exercises as early as one week post-surgery. Providing that you have been given the all-clear from your surgeon or physiotherapist, these exercises can be done in a lying-down position to ensure minimal stress on the abdominal area. Over time, gradually increase the intensity of the exercises, and modify their frequency following the advice of a health professional.
Michelle Kenway Hysterectomy Example
Let's take a look at a typical recovery exercise plan, following Michelle Kenway's guidelines:
- Weeks 1-2: Rest and focus on deep breathing exercises, while maintaining a gentle squeeze of the pelvic floor muscles.
- Weeks 3-4: Begin to incorporate gentle pelvic floor exercises and movements such as ankle pumps, knee slides, or heel slides.
- Weeks 5-6: Gradually increase the intensity of pelvic floor exercises and slowly start introducing some light, low-impact exercises such as walking or water-based activities.
The journey to full pelvic floor recovery following a hysterectomy can be challenging and filled with uncertainty. However, with guidance from experts like Michelle Kenway, women can feel empowered and armed with the knowledge necessary to regain their pelvic floor strength and overall well-being. It is essential to remember that every woman's recovery journey is unique, and following a personalized approach under medical guidance is vital. If you found this post insightful and valuable, please feel free to share it with others and continue exploring our Pelvic Floor Therapy blog for more information and resources on pelvic floor health.