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Hysterectomy Questions: Will I have a scar from a hysterectomy?

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Updated December 28, 2003

Will I have a scar from a hysterectomy?

Whether or not you will have a scar and the kind of scar you will have depend on the kind of cut (incision) the doctor makes. The incision will depend on your condition and which method you choose.

In the first method, the surgeon cuts along the pubic hairline. Sometimes called a "bikini" cut, the scar may be harder to see after it heals.

Another method is to make a cut through the vagina. This method leaves no scar that can be seen. The surgeon may be able to use this method if your uterus is small or if it has slipped (prolapsed) into the vagina.

In the third method, the surgeon cuts downwards from just below the belly button to just above the pubic hairline. The cut is usually 4 to 6 inches long. This type of cut makes it easy for the surgeon to work inside the pelvis.

You should discuss these choices with your doctor and be sure that you understand them.

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Reprinted from the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR)

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