Does a Hysterectomy Hurt? Comparing Narcotic Requirements and Pain Scores in Patients Undergoing Apical Prolapse Repair with or without Hysterectomy

Akira Gillingham*, Kimberly Kenton, Julia Geynisman-Tan, Oluwateniola Brown, Sarah A. Collins, Christina Lewicky Gaupp, Margaret G. Mueller

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective The aim of the study was to compare narcotic requirements with early postoperative pain scores in women undergoing apical prolapse surgery with or without hysterectomy. Methods All cases of apical prolapse repair at our institution in 2016 were identified. The following was abstracted from the health record: demographics, comorbidities, procedure details, baseline and postoperative care unit (PACU) pain scores, and operating room (OR) and PACU narcotic doses. Doses were converted to morphine milligram equivalents (MME) for analysis. Correlations are reported using Pearson ρ. Results One hundred fifty-six cases were identified. Seventy-eight percent of participants were white and the mean ± SD age was 59 ± 11 years. One hundred seventeen patients (75%) underwent laparoscopic/robotic sacrocolpopexy, 35 (22%) native tissue vaginal repairs, and 4 (3%) open sacrocolpopexy. One hundred twenty-two patients (78%) underwent concomitant hysterectomy: 93 (76%) were laparoscopic, 25 (20%) vaginal, and 4 (4%) abdominal. The groups were similar, with the exception of younger age and longer OR time in the hysterectomy group. Hysterectomy by any route was not associated with increased OR MMEs (29 vs 22, P = 0.22), PACU MMEs (13 vs 13, P = 0.54), 4-hour PACU pain scores (2.5 vs 2.0, P = 0.22), or 6-hour PACU pain scores (2.6 vs 2.3, P = 0.54). After controlling for age and OR time, there remained no differences in these variables. Likewise, when analyzing laparoscopic or vaginal groups separately on multivariate regression, there were no differences in MMEs or postoperative pain scores in patients with and without concomitant hysterectomy. Conclusions Concomitant hysterectomy at the time of prolapse repair does not increase pain medication requirements or patient-reported postoperative pain scores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)356-359
Number of pages4
JournalFemale Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2021


  • apical prolapse repair
  • hysterectomy
  • narcotic use
  • postoperative pain scores

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Urology


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