Hysterectomy


#1

My wife recently gave birth via C-Section for the fourth time. The Doctor told us that he thinks we’re done having kids because my wife’s uterus just can’t handle another pregnancy. He also went on to say that while performing the C-Section he didn’t even have to cut the uterus. It was so thin that he could see the baby through the uterus and the utuerus separated with the application of the forceps. My wife’s uterus did not actually rupture, but according to the doctor, it probably would have at any time. It was a narrowly averted disaster.

So, my wife’s life would literally be in danger if she were to get pregnant again. I know all about NFP as an alternative, but my question is would a hysterectomy be evil if its intent is to safeguard my wife’s life? It’s not that we don’t want to have more children, we would like to have even more.


#2

If your wife’s uterus is diseased than removing it is not a sin.

Why not contact the National Catholic Bioethic Center. They will be able to give you a more specific answer according to your specific circumstances.

ncbcenter.org/page.aspx?pid=404

Hope that helps.


#3

I know you will hate me for saying it and I do hope I am wrong, but as far as I know, if everything is fine provided she doesn't get pregnant again than there is no reason for it.

If it's the pregnancy that must at all costs be avoided then you can either abstain- yes, I AM fully aware of the implications of this, or use NFP at the utmost , strictest level.


#4

Listen to your doctor. Your wife and the doctor know what's best for her.


#5

Not knowing all of the details of your situation, I have to agree with 1inlCXC.

However, I do strongly advise you to contact the Bioethic Center and speak with them. The Pope Paul VI Institute might also be a good resource. Either of those places may have a different solution for you, or may be able to set your mind/soul at ease about a hysterectomy if that is your only option.

Either way, I’ll be praying for you.


#6

Doesn’t it make your head hurt?!?

If a woman’s uterous is diseased or damaged, removal is not a sin.

If the only danger is a future pregnancy, than sterlization (whether a tubal or a hyterectomy) is a sin. The intent to save the mother’s life is nobel but not an excuse for sin.

The best advice is to try to get a second opinon, preferably from a pro-life OB/GYN. Some doctor’s jump too quickly to sterlization. However, if that was the only concern, the doc probably would have suggested a tubal since that is much simpler surgery.


#7

Yes, I agree, contact a reliable Catholic source for help. Basically if the reason for the hysterectomy is to avoid children since it is so dangerous for her (ie to be able to have sex without getting pregnant ), then no, it would not be ok. If sterility were an unintended side effect of the hysterectomy then it would be different. I still think it would be wise to contact someone with more authority on the subject who can give you guidance in this area.

Sorry you guys are going through this, I know it must be tough and scary! I will say a prayer for you!

BTW, fwiw, I have someone in my family that “died” and was revived in the birth of their last child, they were told she would not survive another birth. 15+ years later the mother/child are doing very well, and (very conservatively practiced) NFP has kept them from having any other children.


#8

Well, it’s been going on two years since I started this thread and only three months since we’ve had ANOTHER child! My wife survived this last pregnancy, but it was definitely scary in the operating room.

My wife was under general anesthesia, and the C-section took twice as long as it normally did. I was afraid she was going to die. There was so much blood lost. At one point, the doctor looked over at me and must have seen my eyes popping out of my head, because he said, “She’s going to be ok. It’s just that every time I try to stitch her uterus together, the tissue tears apart. So, I’m going to use a special bandage.” The doctor then put on this special bandage that formed some type of lattice work for him to sew the uterus back together.

The crisis was averted. We had another beautiful baby, and my wife has made a full recovery. The doctor still advised against having anymore children. He knows we’re Catholic, so he didn’t even suggest birth control or tubal ligation :smiley:

I tried contacting the organizations in the posts above, but was never contacted by either. I guess this wheel will just have to get squeaky.

This is a very difficult situation. At this point, we’re just not intimate anymore. We tried using an Ovacue meter last time, which seemed to work for a while, but then my wife started taking a medication, that unbeknownst to us caused her to be more fertile and gave us inaccurate readings.

My wife says it’s not good for us to continue to be non-intimate indefinitely. I am compelled to agree with her…really compelled, trust me. I just don’t see any other option.

Well, I don’t know why I posted this. Just venting I guess.


#9

tough call, you should stick with your spiritual director or ethicist. the people who are happy to give you advice that puts your wife’s life at risk aren’t the ones who are going live with the consequences.


#10

[quote="Southy82, post:8, topic:253201"]
Well, it's been going on two years since I started this thread and only three months since we've had ANOTHER child! My wife survived this last pregnancy, but it was definitely scary in the operating room.

My wife was under general anesthesia, and the C-section took twice as long as it normally did. I was afraid she was going to die. There was so much blood lost. At one point, the doctor looked over at me and must have seen my eyes popping out of my head, because he said, "She's going to be ok. It's just that every time I try to stitch her uterus together, the tissue tears apart. So, I'm going to use a special bandage." The doctor then put on this special bandage that formed some type of lattice work for him to sew the uterus back together.

The crisis was averted. We had another beautiful baby, and my wife has made a full recovery. The doctor still advised against having anymore children. He knows we're Catholic, so he didn't even suggest birth control or tubal ligation :D

I tried contacting the organizations in the posts above, but was never contacted by either. I guess this wheel will just have to get squeaky.

This is a very difficult situation. At this point, we're just not intimate anymore. We tried using an Ovacue meter last time, which seemed to work for a while, but then my wife started taking a medication, that unbeknownst to us caused her to be more fertile and gave us inaccurate readings.

My wife says it's not good for us to continue to be non-intimate indefinitely. I am compelled to agree with her...really compelled, trust me. I just don't see any other option.

Well, I don't know why I posted this. Just venting I guess.

[/quote]

I'm not familiar with the Ovacue monitor, but if it doesn't work well for you and your wife, have you considered trying another type of NFP? Perhaps the sympto-thermal method, or maybe the Creighton method? I'm not very familiar with the Creighton method, but the STM would at least be able to give you a minimum of 10-12 days per month if used very conservatively, i.e., only during Stage 3 when ovulation has been confirmed and, if you're ok with it, the first couple of days of her period. If used that way, there simply isn't a physiological way that she could get pregnant--I mean, to get pregnant you need the sp*erm and the egg to meet, and if the egg's already gone, then that can't happen. The STM is the one taught by the Couple-to-Couple league, and seems to be the most popular method, though I know a lot of people also swear by Creighton. The book "Taking Charge of Your Fertility" by Toni Weschler is an EXCELLENT manual for the STM (frankly, it's better than most Catholic resources that I've found in that it's much more in-depth), though do be aware that she isn't writing from a Catholic perspective, so ignore her suggestions for using barrier methods of birth control during fertile times.

I'm glad that everything worked out well this time. Congratulations on the new little one! :)


#11

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