A woman's reproductive system includes the uterus, the ovaries, the fallopian tubes, and the vagina. The reproductive system is responsible for producing sex hormones and reproductive cells, and for supporting a developing fetus within the uterus.
For a variety of reasons, it may become necessary for a woman to have some or all of her reproductive organs removed. The general term for this procedure is a hysterectomy.
A hysterectomy may be an appropriate treatment for women who have cancer of the uterus, cervix, or ovaries, or who have uncontrolled vaginal bleeding, uterine fibroids, or endometriosis. There are a number of ways this procedure can be performed, depending upon the reason for hysterectomy and the extent of organ removal.
There are several potential complications associated with this procedure that should be discussed with a doctor prior to surgery.
This medical animation explains a hysterectomy - a procedure that may be used to treat some gynecologic cancers, as well as other health conditions.