What Happens during a Total Abdominal Hysterectomy? There are different types of hysterectomy. This means that keeping track of what each procedure involves can be a chore. This article is dedicated to explaining the total abdominal hysterectomy. An abdominal procedure will require that a surgeon make either a vertical or horizontal incision in the abdomen. The incision will give the doctors a clear view of the internal organs and give them plenty space to maneuver and complete the surgery. In regard to hysterectomies, total means that the complete uterus will be removed, including the upper portion and the cervix. In this procedure the cervix is detached at the top of the vagina. With the information presented in the two previous paragraphs we can extrapolate that a total abdominal hysterectomy is an operation to remove the complete uterus, including the cervix, and this will be accomplished by cutting into the abdomen and removing the organs through the opening created. In a partial procedure, the cervix is left in place. This is also known as a Supra- cervical Abdominal Hysterectomy (SAH). Confusion surrounding hysterectomy can be further enhanced when we begin to talk about the removal of the ovaries and the fallopian tubes. Actually, when the ovaries and tubes are taken out the procedure is called an oophorectomy. This is not an element of the hysterectomy, but a separate procedure, and the two procedures do not necessarily go hand in hand. The ovaries are removed when they are compromised by disease and when Endometriosis is diagnosed. It is important to note that the total abdominal hysterectomy is the most invasive of this category of surgeries. Still, it is often seen as the best option when dealing with cancer and large fibroids (non-cancerous tumors). With this surgery there is a risk that the incision area will become infected and recovery time is usually from six to eight weeks. Hopefully, some of your questions about this surgery have been answered. Remember to ask your physician to thoroughly explain what you should expect regarding any surgical procedure.