Ovarian Conservation at the Time of Hysterectomy and Long-Term Health
This is another one of those studies that smashes down decades-old dogma in health care (i.e. smoking is good for you, HRT prevents heart disease, total cholesterol is associated with heart disease, aspirin a day saves lives..). It has been somewhat standard to remove a woman’s ovaries at the time of hysterectomy because…well…just because.
Unfortunately, this study finds some serious flaws in this approach (in this study, over half the women had their ovaries removed). With the exception of cancers of breast and ovaries, all other indices of mortality went up (all cause, heart disease, other cancers). For women under 50 who had bilateral oopherectomies done and chose not to take HRT, an extra 1 in 9 women will die because of the removal of the ovaries. And to think that these doctors get paid extra to remove the ovaries should be abhorrent given these statistics.