Can we talk about sex?

I'm almost 8 weeks post my initial surgery (total hysterectomy and left ovary removal where mass was) and 1 week post omentectomy and right ovary removal so I know it's premature. But I'm 40yrs old and prior to all this had a pretty good sex life with my husband. I desperately want it to be similar post all these physical changes. I know when I start chemo there is also a safety issue as I'll be cytotoxic at times. 

Is anyone comfortable sharing about sexual changes post surgeries and treatments? I am going to ask my oncologist on the 15th but I would love feedback from women who have actually lived it. 


  • Before we started having sex after my hysterectomy (complete abdominal), I was into chemo treatments. Yes, there is a time frame for caution after your treatment. My oncologist said to use condoms within the first week. Well, really who feels like having sex in that first week???..!!!  We were well into my treatments before having sex and there was some discomfort initially, but things returned to normal before too long. Try a lubricant, it can help until things return to normal. Listen to your body. If it doesn't feel right, or is painful, get it checked out. Remember your body has been through a major shock and things are bound to feel different for a while.

  • @kastoyles thank you so much for sharing your story.  I truly appreciate it :smile:
  • Hi @red1976 and @kastoyles.  I hope other women will share their stories here too!  It can be a difficult topic for people to discuss yet it is one that most have questions and concerns about so thanks for starting the discussion!  

    There is a section in By Your Side that addresses intimacy (p.94-96) with some resources listed including 2 books by Anne Katz, "Women, Cancer, Sex" and "Sex When You're Sick: Reclaiming Sexual Health after Illness or Injury. "  Surgery also puts you into immediate menopause which can also create new issues regarding sex along with treatment.  You might want to check out  and/or

  • @Marilyn Thank you so much! I will definitely check out the books. Thank you again :smile:
  • Hi @red1976 - thanks for starting this conversation. I had surgery three months ago and have now finished 2/3 of my chemotherapy treatment. Unfortunately my sex drive, which was pretty normal before, has gone down to almost zero, which really worries me. I think it's more related to the surgery than the treatment. I was not in menopause before and am worried that the removal of the ovaries and the hormonal change has had an impact on my libido. 
  • @Claudia I'm sure our hormone changes will affect our sex drive. I'm not on hormone replacement but I know that can help with sex drive and will consider it if I need to!
  • @red1976...
    Good luck at your Dr appointment today!

  • Thank you for starting the topic and sharing. This can be a difficult issue and not for the subject matter, but the complexity of issues.

    Hello  everyone and @red1976 ; @kastoyles ; @Claudia ; @KarenMari53
    I've posted below 2 very different, yet insightful articles.

    How to feel closer: 

    Preserving Sexual Function in Women Treated for Cancer:
  • Excellent articles...thank you @Flowergirl....I have yet to have my post surgery internal exam and am very anxious about resuming sexual activity. I hope thats a normal response, I have read some horror stories about women who had issues. 
  • Hi @KarenMari53... that is most understandable. I'll encourage you to discuss with your health care team or nurse practitioner. Sometimes, they can provide samples of lubricants so you can see which one will work for you.
    one such is  and can also be found over the counter (but sometimes kept behind the counter - just ask your pharmacist) or KY
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